PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – A rodent infestation has teachers up in arms at one Providence elementary school, WPRI.com has learned.
School department spokeswoman Christina O'Reilly confirmed that the district is currently addressing a mouse problem at Pleasant View Elementary School in the city's Fruit Hill neighborhood. O'Reilly said the school is located in a wooded area, which leaves it susceptible to field mice.
"Given the setting of the school, this is a unique problem," O'Reilly told WPRI.com. "The Aramark custodial staff has been very responsive."
O'Reilly said mice are not a problem in any other city schools.
But the infestation at Pleasant View dates back several months, according to City Councilman Michael Correia, who said the city hired a pest control company to address the problem. Correia said more than 40 mice have been caught since October.
Correia attributed the mouse problem to food being improperly stored in classrooms and not every door having the proper weather stripping to seal off openings for the mice.
"We have had a pest control company in since October and there were a large amount of mice, but now we're finding fewer," Correia said. Correia also confirmed that teachers at the school had filed a grievance with their union.
O'Reilly said the district does not discuss open cases or grievances filed by the teachers
Correia toured the school Tuesday and said he is satisfied with the school department's efforts to rid the school of the mice, but said there is more work that needs to be done.
"There are several factors that are playing a role in having the mice and we have to secure every little nook and cranny to solve the problem," Correia said. "We need to clean up this problem."
The Providence Teachers Union did not immediately respond to a request for comment.