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Integrated Pest Management for Schools and Childcare Facilities

Adminstrators - Components of IPM - Text Only Version

Components of an IPM Program

IPM is based on an understanding of pest biology and habits, and uses a number of strategies, not just pesticides, to control pests. For an effective school or childcare IPM program, the following steps should be implemented:

1. Adopt an IPM policy. Adopt a policy and/or guidelines that state how pests will be managed in your facilities and on grounds. An important consideration in policy development is establishing a procedure for notification of pesticide use. 2. Designate an IPM Coordinator for each building. This person will act as a liaison between the building occupants and the pest management professional. Staff members should report any pest sightings to this person so that they can be communicated to the pest management professional. Any recommendations made by the pest control technician (for cleaning or repairs, etc) should be relayed by the IPM Coordinator to the administration. 3. Review sanitation practices. Pay special attention to food areas such as kitchens and food storage rooms. Sanitation is pest control! 4. Reduce clutter. Clutter is an important harborage for many pests, including rodents, spiders, and cockroaches. Elimination of cardboard and conversion to "boxless storage" is highly recommended, particularly in food areas. 5. Inspect all buildings and grounds. Note situations that are conducive to pest populations. Perform repairs as needed to prevent pest access to buildings or to hiding spaces in walls and equipment. Also, repair any leaks and eliminate standing water. 6. Start a monitoring program to determine if pests are present. Focus on pest-vulnerable areas such as kitchens, teacher's lounges, and custodial closets. Use tools such as pest sighting logs and insect "sticky traps." 7. Identify potential pest species found and determine a control strategy (if one is needed). Control strategies include improved sanitation, repairs, and pesticide treatments, among others. 8. Only apply pesticides when a known pest is present. "Preventive" treatments are not an effective way to manage pest populations, and are not part of an IPM program. 9. If a pesticide is needed, select the least hazardous pesticide. Among the products and application methods available, select the least hazardous option that will effectively control the pest problem. Target treatments to the areas where pests hide. Never apply a pesticide when children are present! 10. Keep records of pest activity and control measures taken (chemical and other control techniques). 11. Evaluate the program on a regular basis. 12. Become a "Certified IPM" school or childcare center. Once your facility is following all of the above practices, you will be qualified for recognition as an IPM school or childcare facility. Contact Tim Gibb for more information. Many pest control professionals provide inspection and monitoring services and will work with you to implement an IPM program. Be sure that contracted services are consistent with your IPM policy. For an IPM program to work, the school must do their part to improve sanitation, reduce clutter, and implement repairs and exclusion techniques recommended by the pest management professional. For specific guidance with the administrative steps in an IPM program, visit Implementing IPM in Your School.

The following links will direct you to the main pages of text-only areas of this site. From the main page of each area, you can visit all area topic pages. Click the "Back" button on your browser to return to the main area page. Pest Management Practices | Administrators | School Staff | Teachers | Students | Parents | Pest Management Professionals