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Barron Collier students say rats are taking over high school

COLLIER COUNTY, Fla. – A rat problem at Barron Collier High School is so bad, students say rats are taking over the entire building.

Students tell WINK News there are rat traps all over the place set up to catch the nasty critters.

“It’s kinda disgusting knowing that there’s rats running around our school,” said sophomore Giovanni Imbriani.

Students have taken to social media to discuss the rat infestation on campus.

“It’s at a school so basically it would be a big deal to people,” said junior Kaitlyn Dooley.

Some have posted pictures of a dead rat found trapped in a classroom last week and of rat droppings in the hallway.

“My Spanish teacher, she had rats in her piñatas and they were knocking down her piñatas in the Spanish room,” said sophomore Nick Thomcik.

WINK News has learned this has been a problem for weeks.

“I think since spring break because someone actually talked about a month in the cafeteria a month ago, so it must have grown bigger now,” said Thomcik.

In an email sent to staff last week, the assistant principal said “Our ‘rat problem’ is getting worse at BCHS! As I explained Monday, rats will chew through plastic and wood to get to food.”

“There’s signs all over the school that says no food in classrooms and everything I guess they’re trying to limit the problem but the problem’s already there,” said Imbriani.

Students tell WINK News they’d like to see the district handle the problem quickly.

“I think that they should close down the school and fix that problem,” said Imbriani.

“I would like to see the rats be gone out of the school completely and not all these traps lying around everywhere,” said Thomcik.

Greg Turchetta with Collier County Public Schools tells WINK News they’re doing all they can to combat the issue, working with a pest control company and a rodent exert. They said rat traps have been placed inside and outside the buildings on campus, nine palms trees were removed from the courtyard, and potential entry points were located and sealed.

Turchetta said “any areas showing signs of pest traffic are immediately deep cleaned and sanitized using the appropriate cleaning methods.”

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