The NY Daily News reported on two recent bed bug incidents and issues in New York City Schools. The first article focused on a Brooklyn school, PS 224. The article states that the school’s problem is much worse than the DOE acknowledges. Parents are keeping their kids out of school to avoid these insects.
The second article addressed bed bug issues in a Bronx school, in which 200 students were moved out of the school for several days while the school was treated with chemicals that had a significant odor. The Department of Education said that school officials weren’t even informed of the insects. The article states that the DOE and East Tremont high school had no role in the treatment decision or method used, it was the landlord’s decision. Bed bugs are immune to most chemicals which also raises the question of whether the best method was chosen for treatment.
We realize that the economics are such and budgets are tight, but this is a problem New York City and other school systems really need to address. We recommend school systems and boards of education take the issue seriously, educate their students, teachers, and staff about bed bugs, and develop protocols including canine inspections and appropriate physical treatment methods if and when there are problems.