WASHINGTON - Savoy Elementary School will be shut down on Monday and Tuesday due to ongoing bed bug and rat issues, D.C. Public Schools announced in a letter to parents on Friday.
In the letter, DCPS Chancellor Antwan Wilson says the district is "committed to ensuring all students and staff are safe, and that the school environment is conducive to learning." Wilson writes that a thorough cleaning of the building will begin Friday night, conducted by DCPS and the Department of General Services. All soft materials, including rugs, cots, blankets and pillows, in the building will be removed, and Wilson writes there will be a safety and health inspection of the entire building to follow.
Students will be relocated during this time, but it was unclear where. Wilson writes that the district will update parents by 3 pm on Sunday as to the location. Parents who have concerns about their child's health are advised to call their doctor.
Wilson appeared live on FOX 5 Friday morning, and he said the issues at Savoy Elementary were extremely important to him.
"We want to make sure that the school is safe. That everyone is healthy. And, you know, I'm looking to get to the bottom of this," Wilson said during the interview.
Also Friday morning, several teachers told FOX 5 they would not report to school because of the ongoing issues. Reporter Melanie Alnwick was told the 'sick out' was not school-wide, and some teachers were reporting to work.
An emergency meeting was held Thursday regarding the reported infestation of bed bugs and rats inside the school, but outraged parents felt they got few answers. Some parents told FOX 5 they wanted the school to be closed until the issue was resolved, and many were fearful of their own homes being contaminated with bed bugs if their child brought them home from school.
Stay with FOX 5 DC and fox5dc.com for updates.