Cobb County School District
Investigating Better Pest Control Options for Schools
IPM Keeps Pests Out and Supports Green Goals
Many schools are “going green” to make their operations more sustainable and create a healthier learning environment for children. A school’s pest control practices can be a big part of such initiatives. By taking a true Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach, schools become less attractive to pests and reduce the need for chemical treatments to keep pests out. Georgia’s Cobb County School District (CCSD) partnered with Orkin in 2008 to implement a greener pest management protocol that would keep pests in their place and improve environments for students, faculty and staff.
Cobb County School District (CCSD) – just outside of Atlanta, GA – has long been a leader in environmental sustainability programs. Orkin became a natural partner when the school system sought a pest management provider that could help them pursue a more rigorous IPM program.
“Cobb Schools were one of the first – if not the first – in the state of Georgia to implement a green custodial chemical program,” says Dr. Gordon Pritz, associate superintendent of operational support for CCSD. “It’s important that we reduce chemical use as part of our overall green efforts while keeping disease-carrying pests out of schools.”
When CCSD began looking for a new pest management provider in 2008, they knew IPM was a must. They had already started an IPM program – reducing the number of pest control work orders by 45 percent within two years. Pleased with the initial results, they wanted to continue pursuing environmentally friendly pest management options.
“We had a need for a pest control solution for 120 facilities,” explains Pritz. “That meant we needed a vendor with the resources to cover our entire operation and that could be on call for emergency assistance.”
When the CCSD team began reviewing providers, they found that Orkin had a track record of working with schools and school systems to provide innovative IPM services. For example, Orkin participated in EPA-funded pilot programs with school systems in Utah and Arizona to implement more stringent IPM protocols and is an active member of a USDA-funded project to develop national IPM guidelines for schools. Additionally, Orkin’s pest specialists are trained to educate each school’s custodial and maintenance staffs on the proactive measures needed to keep pests out of schools and in their natural outdoor environment.
“We know we are receiving the best pest management service available,” says Pritz. “They support our mission to implement greener maintenance practices in our schools, and we could not be more pleased by their quality service and customer care.”