Large flea infestation closes 2 schools in Oakland for cleaning | Ap-Odd-News

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – Two Oakland elementary schools will be closed for the remainder of the week due to a flea infestation possibly caused by raccoons in the area, school officials said Wednesday.

“The move comes after a major problem with fleas emerges on campus,” said the Oakland Unified School District when it announced the two-day closure of Esperanza Elementary School and Korematsu Discovery Academy, which are next to each other, starting Thursday.

Exterminators have been working to get rid of the fleas for a few weeks, but the problem persists and closing schools will prevent fleas from spreading across campus, the district said in a statement.

“It will also allow crews to more thoroughly clean all classrooms and common areas, including removing any carpets where fleas have settled and laid their eggs,” the statement said.

The schools have a park on one side and a wooded area on the other and “have seen problems with raccoons,” the district said. Experts in the district assume that the animals may have led to the flea problem.

Oakland schools welcomed students back to face-to-face classes in August after more than a year of distance learning due to the pandemic.

During the two-day closure, students will receive short-term study packages. Each school has about 300 students.

“Exterminators say you shouldn’t expect the flea problem to be completely resolved” when classrooms reopen on Monday, the district said, noting that flea extermination could take a month and a half or more, but it should be a noticeable improvement give.

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