School Integrated Pest Management 2020: Reducing Pest Problems and Pesticide Hazards in Our Nation’s Schools

Improvements are needed in the environmental health of our schools!

More than 50 published studies since 1994 have documented deficiencies in the environmental health of our nation’s schools, including unmanaged pest infestations, unsafe pesticide use and unnecessary pesticide exposures.

Improvement is feasible and affordable via proven methods.

Pest complaints and pesticide use have been reduced by 71 to 93% in many schools and public buildings nationwide, with no long-term increase in cost, through the use of Integrated Pest Management (IPM). IPM is a common-sense pest management discipline that targets the underlying causes of pest problems, prescribes action only when necessary, and advocates use of less-hazardous pesticides only as a last resort and in conjunction with non-chemical management methods.

A Strategic Plan for Integrated Pest Management in Schools in the United States

Our challenge is to replicate our well-documented IPM successes in all of our schools. This new national strategic plan assesses the current status of school IPM nationwide, recommends best practices, and charts a plan of action to achieve full adoption of IPM in all U.S. public schools by 2020. Please see below for the full text of the strategic plan.

We need your help to:

  • Increase awareness about the problem, and about the availability of solutions to reduce pest issues and pesticide exposure;
  • Generate commitment from agencies, organizations and individuals already working in and influencing schools to actively participate;
  • Provide financial, material and human resources to implement proven approaches including education, regulation, and management tactics to prevent and avoid pest problems;
  • Improve regulations and compliance with existing laws;
  • Address research questions that may lead to less hazardous approaches to managing common and occasional pests in schools;
  • Educate staff and students about the benefits of IPM and how they can apply this approach to their homes and workplaces; and
  • Increase financial resources available to meet these objectives.

Get involved:
Learn more about IPM, get started implementing IPM in your own school, join our National School IPM working group, learn how you can work for the adoption of IPM in your child’s school, or contact us for other ways to participate.

Contact us!

For more information on School IPM 2020, please email us or call (608) 232-1410.

The IPM 2020 Strategic Plan:

School IPM 2020 Pest Management Strategic Plan V3.0

Strategic Plan Outline:




Table of Contents:

1. Executive Summary
Why we need full implementation of high-level IPM in all of our schools.

2. Introduction
The case for advocacy and action.

3. Stakeholder Priorities
Key needs identified by a broad group of diverse stakeholders.

4. Strategic Plan
Objectives, roles and timeline for implementation.

5. IPM Adoption Process
Understanding how communities can be motivated to change behavior.

6. Overview of Pest Management in US Schools
Current status.

7. Management Zones: Preventing and Avoiding Pest-Conducive Conditions, Pests, and Pesticide Hazards
Comprehensive reference for preventing pest problems in schools.

8. Pest-specific Information, Tactics, Emerging Issues and Priorities
Compendium of management strategies for common pests.


Appendix A. Pest Management Options Used in and Around Schools
Inspection, exclusion, sanitation, biological and chemical options.
Appendix B. School Pest Management-related Legislation by State
Issues addressed by existing legislation in each state.
Appendix C. Annual School IPM Report Card
Evaluation tool for measuring progress in each state.
Appendix D. Glossary
Appendix E. Workgroup Participant Contact Information and Biographies
Appendix F. References
School pest management and related publications
Appendix G. Bibliography of Surveys on Pest Management in Schools
Appendix H. School IPM Planning and Evaluation Tool
Appendix I. Directory of Organizations with Roles in School IPM
Appendix J. IPM Curriculum Support Tools
Resources for educators to engage students in practical science and environmental stewardship.
Appendix K. State and Regional IPM Contacts
Appendix L. Directory of School IPM Expertise
Appendix M. School IPM Tool Box
Tools to facilitate progress

Related Documents: School IPM Matrix [.doc] [PDF]

Many thanks to our contributors:
North Central Region IPM Center
Northeastern Region IPM Center
Southern Region IPM Center
Western Region IPM Center
US EPA Office of Pesticide Programs

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