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A California high school is delaying the start of its school year because of a severe rat infestation, Newsweek reports.

About 2,600 students at Schurr High School in Montebello, Calif., Were due to resume face-to-face classes Monday after taking over a year of distance learning. But when teachers arrived on campus to prepare their classrooms, they found dead rats on the floors and desks covered in rodent droppings. One teacher reported hearing rats running around on the walls and ceilings of the building.

In addition to the rat infestation, teachers said the facility’s air conditioning was not working properly, a problem in a school where many classrooms don’t have windows that open for fresh air, the Los Angeles Times reports. COVID-19 security measures recommend improved ventilation systems in schools and other public buildings.

Montebello School District Interim Superintendent Mark Skvarn admitted that the school’s maintenance staff had not adequately prepared the building for reopening and offered no apology for their inaction.

“I’m not going to apologize that this stuff was done as well as it could have been done,” he said.

The school had had a severe rodent problem for years. A teacher confirmed that before schools closed because of the coronavirus pandemic, rats frequently fell out of the tile ceilings and scurried to the next classroom in the middle of the school day.

Learn how a school campus took control of rodents and other pests.

Then check out the latest episode of Straight Talk! Below is advice from Brad Sparks, owner of Elite Pest and Termite Control, on how to keep rodents out of buildings and eliminate those who manage to get inside.

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