What to do if bed bugs hitchhike to school: A guide for parents and teachers

Bed bugs are opportunistic pests that can “hitchhike” their way into schools on clothing, blankets, lunch boxes, stuffed toys, and other personal belongings. Education and preparation are crucial to tackling bed bugs in schools and at home.

Tips for educators

Here are a few things you can do to keep your classroom free of bed bugs:

  • Limit items students transport back and forth to school
  • Watch for signs of bed bugs on backpacks, clothing, blankets, and other personal items students bring into the school
  • Keep each student’s belongings in individual lockers, sealed plastic bins, or as isolated as possible
  • Carefully inspect lost-and-found items and all second-hand or donated items for signs of bed bugs before they are brought into the school
  • Reduce classroom clutter
  • Store teaching aids in tightly-sealed containers
  • Have vacuuming performed daily, especially along baseboards, in and around furniture for seating, sleeping areas, and carpet edges
  • Post bed bug fact sheets on school bulletin boards and make sure educational assistants and other staff are trained to recognize bed bugs and signs of infestation

If you find a bed bug in a child’s belongings, it doesn’t necessarily mean it came from that child’s home. Therefore, make sure you’re sensitive when talking to parents or guardians. Having bed bugs doesn’t mean the child’s home is unclean or poorly kept.

Tips for parents

If your child’s school has reported problems with bed bugs, here are a few tips you can follow to limit the chances of bringing them into your home:

  • Upon returning home from school, have your child empty their backpack outside the home and thoroughly inspect all items for bed bugs
  • Keep school items isolated and contained in a single area of your home
  • If you suspect bed bugs in clothing or fabric items, put the items in the dryer for 30 minutes on high heat

Professional bed bug treatments

If your school or home has a bed bug problem that’s gotten out of hand, Poulin’s Pest Control can help. We offerbed bug inspections and treatments to rid your property of bed bugs.

Bed bug control services in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba

If you suspect a bed bug infestation in your home or school, contact the professionals at Poulin’s Pest Control. One of our trained technicians can visit your property, identify the issue, and devise a plan of action to rid your place of bed bugs for good. Contact us today for more information.

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