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For Parents & Teachers
Since children spend the majority of their day in school, they need a pest-free learning environment. DPR recommends that schools use integrated pest management (IPM) to keep pests out of schools. IPM uses strategies to reduce pest access to sources of food, water, and shelter. An IPM program may include the use of pesticides after other pest management methods are tried, but ineffective. Reduced-risk pesticide options are considered first.
The Healthy Schools Act encourages IPM in schools and gives parents valuable information about pesticide use at schools.
Healthy Schools Act at a Glance
The Healthy Schools Act (HSA) establishes your right to know about the pesticides that are applied at your school. If your school applies pesticides, there is certain information you have a right to obtain. There are some pesticides exempt from these HSA requirements
You will receive:
- An annual notification of pesticides expected to be used during the year.
- The opportunity to register to receive notifications of individual pesticide applications. If you choose to register, you should receive the notice at least 72 hours in advance of an intended application.
The school must:
- Post an IPM plan to the school or district Web site, or include it with the annual notification.
- Post warning signs around the pesticide application area 24 hours before and remain in place 72 hours after.
- Keep pesticide use records on site for four years and make them available to the public when requested.
If you have questions about your school’s IPM program, how to receive notifications about pesticide applications, or would like more information about IPM or the Healthy School Act contact the IPM Coordinator at your school.
Teachers: IPM in the Classroom
- To find out more about common pests found in classrooms, check out U.S. EPA Integrated Pest Management (IPM) in Schools.
- California Education and the Environment Initiative (EEI) Curriculum units
- The IPM institute has established a list of IPM-related education activities for classrooms
- Pest World for Kids has a series of guides that are geared toward enhancing children’s knowledge in pest identification. They also have information for teachers.
Parents: What is IPM?
- What is IPM?
- How do you know if your school is really using IPM?
- HELPR allows you to look up recommendations for managing a particular pest. You can view information about pesticide toxicology, exposure, available products and regulatory status all in one place. It will help you to compare the environmental and health impacts of pesticides used at your school.