Bed bugs lead to hoodie ban in Virginia high school

by nobugsonme on March 11, 2013 · 8 comments

in bed bugs in schools

Fear of bed bugs spreading via student clothing at Churchland High School in Portsmouth, Virginia has led to a hoodie ban, Coastal Virginia’s reports.

Yes, bed bugs can and do hitchhike on clothing and possessions, but there’s nothing magical about hoodies that makes them ideal bed bug carriers.

And there’s no reason to think kids wearing jeans with rolled cuffs, teachers wearing socks, Principals wearing coats, or anyone with a bag will be 100% safe from carrying bed bugs home.

Note the reference in the video to Virginia Tech’s Dini Miller who called the hoodie ban “ridiculous”.

Not only will it probably not help, but it may also lead to a false sense of security.

Anyone else heard of a ban like this?!?

Churchland is actually the third local school to have a known bed bug problem.  A few weeks back in this post, I mentioned one of the others — I. C. Norcom High School in Portsmouth — where other strange precautions were being implemented:

And consider the case of Portsmouth Virginia, where last week, (according to WAVY news,) I.C. Norcom High School teachers came to class in “protective clothing” (whatever that means — Tyvek suits?) In any case, it is bound to be ineffective. And students were asked to tote their belongings around school in plastic bags, which in at least one case, a reporter noted, resulted in a torn bag by the end of the day.

[Emphasis added.]

Again, those torn bags may lead to a false sense of security.  It’s good this school district is trying to deal with bed bugs, but more education for everyone on how to detect and respond to bed bugs if found at home will probably go further than these measures.

Your thoughts?  Please hit the comment button and share them!

More on bed bugs in Portsmouth’s Churchland High here.  (If the video above does not load, you can view it there too.)

1 TAOT March 11, 2013 at 1:07 am

No comments except how sad it is that our already overburdened schools with too small of budgets are dealing with this.

I do think the hoodie ban is ridiculous. Are we going to ban bookbags (and the plastic bag is the best that they could come up with on the budgets).

I feel for everyone involved: students, teachers, parents, etc.

2 Ci Lecto March 11, 2013 at 8:53 am

I believe that in a crisis situation, certain parties come to the table with their long-held agendas. Sometimes, we listen to these people. Examples: Pre “9/11”, you could walk into a lot of NYC office buildings (and offices) during business hours, without barriers and IDs. Post 9/11, you typically must swipe a card or deal with a guard. Yet, it’s not like these procedures would have stopped the 9/11 terrorists. It’s just that in the wake of 9/11, we started listening to the “security experts”, who long recommended these procedures (which won’t prevent people from flying planes into office buildings, but likely do help against theft and snooping).

With hoodies, it’s likely just someone who never liked them in the first place.

Ironically, when I had the BB episode that led me to join “Bedbugger”, part of my precautions was to commute to work in a freshly laundered hoodie.

3 Bayonnebedbug March 11, 2013 at 9:02 am

While the above article seems somewhat ridiculous at least they brought the bed bug epidemic to the forefront in their public school system. Ok the information is wrong but at least they are not afraid to mention it as so many school systems are.
I have a wife who works as a teachers aide and a son in high school.
The school were my wife works KNEW of the infestation during the 2011-2012 but said nothing(found out about internal memos that had been sent by the schools principal and school nurse to the superintendent of schools) but he choose to do NOTHING. Hence our infestation.
As far as “Hoodies” go in Bayonne we have a dress code for public schools and personally I do like the fact “Hoodies” are not allowed to much crime and bullying that goes on in schools today and a Hoodie can conceal a kids face from the video cameras very easy.

Just too bad about the dis-information in the above article but perhaps a hidden agenda about the hoodies and perhaps a prelude to a dress code for this school system.

As far as book bag goes I spend a good 15 minutes inspecting my sons book bag and books every day when arrive home from school(his book bag is placed outside of house until inspected).

In my observation the above article seems this school system is using the terror of bed bugs to begin to restrict students privacy in some regards (a see through book bag)?

I wish they would get their information about bed bugs straight though.

Bayonne bed bug

4 Bed Bug Boss March 11, 2013 at 9:26 am

Really? When I saw this ad a few days back I though to myself how ridiculous!

How about some good solid education to the children and families so the thought of bringing bed bugs to school would be constant in their minds.

When in doubt use those PackTites.

Bed bug boss

5 Mike March 17, 2013 at 5:45 am

From the news photos, they did appear to be Tyvek suits, and this “protection” was provided only to staff. This whole Portsmouth thing just keeps reaching new levels of ridiculousness. Again according to news reports, the two previous schools (and 39 school busses) were all “treated” because *a single* bed bug was noticed on *a single* student at each location. The treatments were done despite no bugs being noted in the schools themselves. And now this hoodie nonsense. To make it even more embarrassing, Dr. Miller’s Bed Bug Action Plan for Schools is from right down the road at Virginia Tech, the school system has known about it, and even after all the recent hubbub Portsmouth schools STILL isn’t implementing such simple recommendations as retaining a pest control firm specializing in bed bugs or conducting regular routine canine inspections. Oh well, I guess somebody has to be the example for everyone else on how NOT to react to a bed bug sighting!

6 Hademinsanjose March 30, 2013 at 2:29 am

I think there’s a conspiracy going on here. Diatomaceous earth is a highly effective and economical treatment for bedbugs, and it’s non-toxic to humans. I know this from firsthand experience. I’m a bedbug veteran. Yet an Orkin inspector never mentioned this type of treatment to me and I don’t hear it mentioned much in the media and even the Internet relative to other types of very expensive treatments. Doesn’t put a good light on such media and the ‘professional’ pest business. People are needlessly suffering while others are profiting. When I came across bedbugs I had already learned to manage some tough pests like roaches and rats. But the bedbugs traumatized me the most. Learn about them. They are incredibly nasty.

7 nobugsonme March 30, 2013 at 2:40 pm

Hi Hadem,
I wouldn’t call it a conspiracy. DE can be a useful tool but it often is not sufficient to quickly or entirely eliminate a bed bug problem. Note that it’s frequently over- or misapplied, so anyone reading this who wants to apply DE should do their homework first.

We have a FAQ on DE which goes into the pros and cons, and gives some suggestions on method and further resources.

8 Bed Bug 911 March 30, 2013 at 10:27 pm

I dont get it. Since when do bed bugs only have a taste for hoodies and not other types of clothing? I think the school is trying to find an excuse to just ban hoodies.

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