Caution tape warns people not to enter the auditorium at Lewiston Middle School, where school officials discovered mold. Credit: CBS 13

Lewiston School Superintendent Bill Webster says that mold was discovered last month at Lewiston Middle School.

“We did both surface testing and air testing throughout the facility, and we found that there were some elevated levels on the stage area,” Webster said.

School officials say the auditorium will remain closed the rest of the school year.

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They say they first discovered a problem when some mold was spotted in a dressing room directly attached to the auditorium.

“The cause of the mold is a steam leak that was located beneath the stage,” Webster said.

Lewiston Middle School is one of the last remaining public buildings in Lewiston that is still heated by steam.

“We did a renovation and an expansion of the front side [of the school] in 2014, but we did very little work in the auditorium itself,” Webster said.

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They say the auditorium is used by various organizations throughout the community because it can seat almost 1,000 people.

“We want to get it open again as quickly and safely as we can,” Webster said. “We’re very disappointed with what transpired, but safety is our number one goal.”

He also says that school officials will be looking at a roof leak above the auditorium while it remains closed.

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“We are planning on reopening the auditorium in time for the next school year,” Webster said.

He also stressed that most of the schools in the district wouldn’t have similar problems, since many of them are newer buildings.