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Problems at Rio Claro west Secondary

By STACY MOORE Thursday, May 22 2014

SEVERAL Students of Rio Claro West Secondary had to be rushed to the area’s health centre after complaining of skin irritation, caused by insect bites. Some of the students shoulders, hands and legs were covered with red marks as a result. Only last week Friday, the school compound was sprayed when students complained of being bitten in their classrooms by insects.

However the problem persisted on Monday as more students had to be taken to the Rio Claro Health Centre.

Yesterday morning students and teachers of the school were taken to the nearby health centre as they complained of itching skins.

One parent Lisa Ramsingh said, on Tuesday morning she had to rush her daughter Leeanna to the health centre, as her daughter had similar symptoms. “On my daughter’s skin I saw red spots and the affected area was swollen. And she said that her skin kept itching.” Ramsingh told Newsday. The worried parent said her daughter told her while in the classroom she felt an insect biting her, but she did not know what it was. “The children are not making this up, because like Leeanna, there are other children in the school with red spots on their body. The children cannot concentrate like this, and their health is at risk.”she said.

Another parent, Natasha Sandy, said that she would like to get to the root of the problem. “I want to know what exactly is happening in this school. As parents we need to be told what is going on. And the problem needs to be rectified immediately, because these are children.” Sandy said.

She also said; “they sprayed the school last week, and clearly that did not work. So something else needs to be done, and there needs to be dialogue with the parents.”

Some of the parents suspect that the school may be infested with fleas. “There are always stray dogs on this compound. So I don’t know if the school might be infested with fleas. But whatever it is, these insects are bitting our children. And we need to act.” said another parent.

Trinidad and Tobago Unified Teachers Association (TUTTA) president, Davanand Sinanan, said that he was aware of the problem at the school. But said that he hoped proper protocol was followed at the school to ensure the safety of the students.

Up to late yesterday evening officials of the Insect Vector Control Unit and Public Health Department were expected to visit the school.

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