Middle Creek High School teacher says classroom made her sick

WAKE COUNTY (WTVD) -- A Wake County teacher says her classroom is making her sick. DeJah Debon told ABC11 she tested positive Thursday for multiple mold allergies.

She said she is convinced it stems from a leaky ceiling inside her Middle Creek High School biology classroom that has been dripping since late September, around the time her symptoms started.

"It felt as if I was aspirating, like I was bubbling and choking," said Debon.

The typically healthy teacher said the suffocating pain was constant, but doctors could not pinpoint the source of her illness so she returned to class.

"I started to feel bad again. I started to feel fatigued. My cough returned, the sickest I have ever been in my life. It was the most terrifying experience I've ever had to endure when it came to my health," she said.

After repeated requests for a mold test and a change of classrooms, Debon took a medical leave.

When she was told she would have to return to the same classroom two weeks later she resigned.

"My loved ones are begging me to get out of that environment, and now I'm looking at losing my health insurance and the fact that I have to deal with one to three years of injections for my allergies," she said.

Wake County Schools says two separate tests were conducted in the classroom, including one by an independent agency which found the ceiling contained 'no detectable mold spores'.

An air sample of the classroom also returned negative results for mold.


Debon worries a problem could still be lurking.

"In a room where water is pouring inside, that can't be healthy," she said.

"This has been without question an unfortunate situation for the students and staff involved and one that we are taking very seriously. The safety of our students and staff is always a main priority for my administrative team and the school district," said Principal Wade Martin in a statement to ABC11.

Contractors are currently working to repair the leak.

Debon said she was never interviewed about the problem inside the classroom where she spent 8 to 12 hours per day and can't understand why something wasn't done sooner.

Her resignation takes effect on Friday.

"That's heartbreaking for me and continues to be heartbreaking because I love my kids. I love my job. I love teaching science. I love what I do, and again I just return to being baffled," said Debon.

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