IPM Specialists Receive Child Care & School IPM Recognition Awards in Texas
Zach Bruns, School IPM 2015 Project Assistant, IPM Institute of North America
Every day, 49 million children attend school in the United States, along with nearly seven
million teachers and staff. But they’re not alone; schools are also frequented by a number of
pests, such as cockroaches, mice and dust mites.
School Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is a prevention-based, highly effective
approach to reducing the number of pests present in schools without using pesticides, as well
as decreasing staff and student absences while cutting liability and energy costs and
improving food safety and air quality.
In Texas, Tom Chavez of Round Rock Independent School District, David Henderson of
Spring Independent School District, and Janet Hurley of Texas AgriLife Extension Service
have taken the lead in implementing creative, cost-effective programs that ensure clean, safe learning environments for our children, such as installing door sweeps at the base of exterior doors to prevent pest entry which can reduce pest complaints by up to 65%. The School IPM 2015 Working Group is proud to honor Tom, David and Janet with the 2009-2010 Child Care and School IPM Recognition Award for their outstanding work in safeguarding children’s
health by reducing the application of pesticides in childcare facilities and schools.
With support from the School IPM 2015 Working Group—a joint collaboration between
the School IPM 2015 Steering Committee, the North Central, Northeastern, Southern and
Western School IPM Regional Working Groups, the IPM Institute of North America, the US EPA
and the USDA –a national effort has been established to promote high-level IPM in all U.S.
public schools by 2015. Currently, more than 400,000 students and staff nationwide learn,
work and play in an environment where high-level IPM has been implemented. Everyone is
welcome to join the school IPM 2015 effort. Please visit www.schoolipm2015.com for more
About the award winners:
Through the Tools for Schools program, 27-year maintenance veteran Tom Chavez instructs
students and staff of Round Rock Independent School District about preventative
maintenance, pest tracking and safely eliminating pests from the classroom. While
collaborating with the Texas Department of Agriculture and the City of Austin’s “Grow Green”
Program, Mr. Chavez has saved Round Rock ISD considerable amounts of time and money by
teaching his district how to be part of their IPM program.
After establishing two IPM programs in South Carolina, David Henderson now oversees the
in-house pest control program for Texas’ Spring Independent School District. As assistant IPM
coordinator and applicator, David works with Spring’s construction and transportation
department to eliminate pest entrances to school buildings and buses. Mr. Henderson also
saves Spring ISD money by purchasing effective pest control equipment and keeping
complete electronic records for all pesticide applications.
Often going above the call of duty, Janet Hurley, school IPM specialist for Texas AgriLife
Extension Service and co-leader of the Southern School IPM Working Group, has been a
major supporter of school IPM, both locally and nationally. Ms. Hurley educates national
school organizations on IPM principles and coordinates advance training sessions for over
1,000 school facility managers and IPM coordinators throughout Texas.