School IPM Model Contract

Introduction to the School IPM Model Contract

This document was designed to be used by officials working in schools, such as purchasing agents, who are responsible for procuring pest management services. This document is not designed to be used as is. It is a "model" or recommendation from which to construct a formal IPM contract. Standard contract language such as pricing, termination clauses, and certain regulatory language has been purposely excluded. Required language common to all contracts as a local policy should be inserted into this "model" before implementation. Additional assistance in creating a formal contract can be sought from professional IPM practitioners, legal consultants, and university extension professors.

The "model" contract provides a minimum standard of IPM techniques which, if followed, should provide quality pest management while minimizing risk. Local circumstances may make some practices/descriptions contained within the contract inappropriate. In such cases an IPM practitioner should be consulted to help modify contract language to make it more suitable. Many individuals participated in meetings over the last three years in an effort to draft this document. Members of the Florida School IPM Advisory Board have provided considerable input to the creation of the model contract. The list below acknowledges those individuals and others who have contributed during development of this document.

Eric Althouse, FL Department of Education, Tallahassee, FL
Eddie Flicker, Pasco County Schools, FL
Dr. Al Greene, US General Services Administration, Washington DC
Howard Hochman, Attorney at Law, Miami, FL
Michael Holsinger, Sarasota County Cooperative Extension, FL
Dr. Phil Koehler, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
Dr. Richard Kramer, American Pest Management, Tacoma Park, MD
Aliki Moncreif, L.E.A.F., Tallahassee, FL
Dr. Michael Olexa, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
Dr. George Rambo, GRC Services Inc., Virginia
Richard Smith, Brevard County Schools, FL

The model contract is being provided in the hope that it can help schools across the U.S. improve their pest management programs. Suggestions for improving this document are solicited and can be directed to the Webmaster of the School IPM Web Site.

Clay W. Scherer

Clay W. Scherer, Ph.D.
Syngenta Professional Products
Greensboro, NC

John Cooksey

John Cooksey
McCall's Services
Jacksonville, FL

November 2001

School IPM Model Contract

  1. Description of parties involved in this contract
    1. School/School District and IPM Coordinator
    2. Contractor

  2. Definitions
    1. Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
      1. IPM is a process through which pest risk is minimized while simultaneously minimizing risk associated with pest treatment such as pesticide exposure. IPM involves several decision-making steps based on all available information to ensure the most appropriate treatment method is employed and students, staff, and faculty are protected from the potential dangers of pests and pesticides.
      2. Risk of pest exposure
        1. It is recognized that pests present health hazards to the occupants of schools buildings. These hazards exist in the form of insect stings or bites, allergens generated and/or dispersed by insects, or human pathogens mechanically vectored by insects.
      3. Risk of pesticide exposure
        1. It is recognized that pesticides by definition present an inherent potential health risk. Depending on toxicity of the pesticide and exposure, pesticides can cause severe harmful effects to humans if misused. These effects can be related to nervous systems, respiratory systems, metabolic systems, and endocrine systems of humans.
      4. Thinking (decision-making process) versus applying pesticides
        1. Integrated pest management stands as a contrast to traditional regularly scheduled pesticide applications to structures. Integrated pest management involves preventing pest problems, treating only documented pest problems, treating pest problems through precision targeting with the most appropriate material (least toxic while still being effective) and technique. This process requires decisions to be made at every step. Integrated pest management requires a high level of communication between the pest manager and the school official supervising pest management. Communication between pest managers and school officials should be well documented.
    2. Pest prevention
      1. Exclusion
        1. Exclusion is a method of keeping pests out of structures and therefore preventing pests from becoming an indoor pest problem. Techniques used in exclusion include but are not limited to installing door sweeps to exterior doors to prevent pests from entering the structure under the door, installing hardware cloth to any appropriate opening in structures such as air vents and sealing of exterior windows with appropriate caulking material.
      2. Sanitation
        1. Sanitation is critical in pest management because it often is the food debris left behind by humans which attract pests. Sanitation improvements which help prevent pests include but are not limited to placing plastic liners in garbage cans and removing them daily, placing the garbage dumpster(s) away from any entrance to the structure, keeping garbage dumpster lids closed, proper cleaning of the food handling and preparation area daily, and eliminating water sources available to pests in all structures.
      3. As-needed application of treatments. Only after a pest infestation has been documented through inspection and/or monitoring should a treatment be initiated.
        1. Inspection involves a thorough examination of structures to assess pest identification, pest infestation levels, evidence of pest activity, and identification of potential pest encouraging circumstances.
        2. Monitoring is a technique to evaluate the presence/absence of pests, the identification of pests, and the location of pest infestations.
        3. Treatment includes any action that serves to reduce or exclude pest populations.
      4. Least toxic methods
        1. Non-chemical treatments
          1. Several treatments for pest management do not include the use of pesticides. Examples of such treatments include vacuum devices or mechanical traps. Additionally, non-chemical treatments can include structural modifications and sanitation measures.
        2. Non-use of space sprays
          1. Use of space sprays is not considered part of an IPM program. Space spraying is the technique of applying liquid pesticides to entire surfaces within a structure including floors, and walls.
        3. Crack and crevice
          1. Crack and crevice treatments intentionally apply pesticides in areas difficult for children to contact. Crack and crevice treatments might include treatment of wall voids, behind electrical outlets, or behind stationary equipment or furniture.
        4. Baits
          1. Baits are pesticide formulations which contain a pest attractant, a toxicant, and a carrier substance. Baits are generally considered a choice treatment method because they contain relatively small amounts of toxicant and generally are applied such that it is difficult for children to contact any residue. Baits are formulated as granules, gels, liquids, and in containerized stations.
        5. EPA hazard categories
          1. The use of a Category I pesticide in a school is considered unnecessary and is not part of an IPM program. Use of a Category II pesticide is considered for use in only those unusual circumstances where alternative treatments have failed. The vast majority of pest management strategies within an IPM program should be adequate utilizing either category III or IV pesticides.
        6. Banned products
          1. Use of any product being phased out or banned by state or federal agencies is prohibited under this contract.
      5. Precision targeting
        1. Precision targeting treatments is essential in attaining the most efficient pest management without increasing risk. Precision targeting is placing treatments only where the pests are present and where children are not present. Precision targeting is using the least amount of pesticide necessary to solve the pest problem.
      6. Indoor pest control (contract does not include "outdoor"/Landscape Turf)
        1. This contract is for in-door pest control. This contract covers those pests which may occur in classrooms, cafeterias, offices, bathrooms, gymnasiums, locker rooms, and other in-door areas of the school. This contract does not include landscape pest management or turf pest management including athletic fields, playgrounds, and other out-door areas.
      7. Service Call
        1. A service call is that service provided by the contractor outside of regularly scheduled visits generated by contact from the IPM Coordinator.
      8. Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Coordinator
        1. The IPM coordinator is a school official designated to communicate with contractor on school's behalf and supervise contractor's service.
      9. Service List
        1. The service list identifies all buildings and/or areas to be serviced by the contractor by number or name.

  3. Necessary qualifications of service provider
    1. Contractor shall possess a certified pest control operator's license.
    2. Contractor employees servicing the school must have completed extensive training in Integrated Pest Management.
    3. All employees of service provider must possess proper identification and proof of credentials while on school premises.

  4. Description of service
    1. Areas of service
      1. This contract for pest management includes all buildings and immediate perimeters of buildings (approximately 5 ft. from exterior walls) on school grounds except those identified by IPM Coordinators as not requiring pest management service. The area of service does not include those areas generally regarded as athletic fields or other outdoor turf areas not associated with buildings. In some cases the IPM Coordinator may wish to include areas designated as "playgrounds" under this contract. This "model" contract should be amended appropriately in those cases.
      2. The contractor and IPM Coordinator shall agree prior to contract initiation which buildings on school grounds will be under service and which will not. Each building should be identified by number or name and this shall be known as the service list.
    2. Specified services
      1. The primary service rendered by the contractor in an IPM program is the contractor's knowledge about pests and their management; not the contractor's ability to apply pesticides. The service provided by the contractor will include (a) regularly scheduled inspections, (b) regular monitoring for pests, (c) proper identification and treatment of pests consistent with IPM principles and (d) recommendations to IPM Coordinator to reduce future infestations of pests.
        1. Regularly scheduled inspections will consist of examining the entire inside and outside of all buildings on the service list for pests or evidence of pest activity not less than once per month. During inspection, the contractor will complete an inspection form for each building. On the inspection form the contractor will report the date and time of the inspection and any pests observed or evidence of pest activity. The contractor will report any structural features which could be improved to prevent current or future pest problems. The contractor will report on the inspection form specifically where within the building any pests were observed and specifically where the structural improvements should be made. In addition the contractor will report results of monitoring devices placed within the building. Copies of all inspection forms will be made available to IPM Coordinator upon completion of inspection and signed by the contractor and IPM Coordinator documenting communication. IPM Coordinator will maintain these records at a central location for a minimum of one year. It is recommended that Contractor maintain records of all inspections as well. As a part of the inspection service the contractor will also inspect the Pest Sighting Form for each location where a Pest Sighting Form exists. The contractor will use the information provided on the Pest Sighting Form to aid in locating pest infestations. The contractor will initial his/her name next to each pest sighting recorded in the Pest Sighting Form upon completing investigation of that pest sighting.
        2. Regular monitoring for pests documents where and when pests occur and focuses treatment efforts to only those areas which are infested. Monitoring should include the use of devices known as "sticky traps" or "trap monitors". These devices contain no pesticides but have sticky surfaces such that pests are retained within the device. The types of monitors and the number of monitors placed in each building on the service list should be agreed upon by the contractor and IPM Coordinator at the time of contract "signing". As a default setting, no fewer than 10 monitors should be used in school cafeterias or lunchrooms (including food storage areas) and all other rooms (classrooms, teacher's lounges, offices, vending machine areas, custodial closets, etc. monitored with no fewer than 2 monitors each. The number of monitors placed in each room and the exact location of each monitor within each room can be modified by the contractor as deemed appropriate. Monitors are to be inspected not less than monthly by the contractor and results of monitors reported on the inspection form. The type and number of pests observed through the monitoring program should be reported on the inspection form. The specific location of the monitors with pests should be noted on the inspection form. Monitors should be in good working condition at all times. Any change in overall monitoring program should be communicated to the IPM Coordinator on the inspection form.
        3. Proper identification and treatment of pests is crucial. Upon properly identifying the pest, the contractor will determine the most effective method of treating the pest problem considering specific pest behavior, biology, location within structure, and potential health hazards of the pest and treatment. The first consideration for solving the pest problem will always be a treatment without using pesticides. Such treatments are the use of vacuum devices, mechanical traps, or mechanisms for exclusion. If the contractor determines that a pesticide treatment will be necessary, the contractor should evaluate the various products labeled for use in the specific circumstance and make a decision on which product and treatment method is most appropriate considering potential health hazards of the pest and the treatment.
          1. If a treatment will include the use of a pesticide not formulated as a bait or in a containerized bait station, the contractor must notify the IPM Coordinator prior to application. If the treatment will include only a pesticide formulated as a bait or in a containerized bait station the contractor does not have to notify the IPM Coordinator prior to application.
          2. All treatments whether including a pesticide or not must be reported on the Record of Treatment form. Copies of the Record of Treatment form should be made available to the IPM Coordinator immediately upon completion of the treatment.
      2. The contractor shall make recommendations to the IPM Coordinator regarding unsatisfactory structural features which unnecessarily attract, encourage, support, provide entry to, or otherwise increase the levels of pest infestation (conducive conditions). The contractor will report such recommendations to the IPM Coordinator using the Pest Proofing form. The contractor shall complete this form as necessary during regular inspection periods. The contractor should record which building and a specific location within the building where the pest conducive condition(s) exists and provide details on what kind of pest(s) may be influenced and why.
      3. Methods of communication
        1. Inspection Form
          1. Inspection forms should be used by the contractor to record any pest activity or evidence of pest activity during inspection periods. The inspection form should indicate the date and time of the inspection, building number, specific location within the building, type of pest observed, and a judgement of the level of infestation. Copies of all inspection forms should be made available to the IPM Coordinator immediately upon completion of all inspections. Any treatments performed by the contractor upon completion of an inspection should be justified by reported sightings of pests on the Inspection Form.
        2. Pest Sighting Form
          1. A Pest Sighting Form shall be placed in a central location within each school, building, or room as determined most appropriate by the contractor and IPM Coordinator. A Pest Sighting Form is to be the responsibility of a predetermined individual for each location where a Pest Sighting Form exists. All employees of the school working within that area are to be notified of the existence of the Pest Sighting Form and report any pest sightings to this individual. When pest sightings are reported this individual should then enter the date, time, specific location, and estimated type of pest sighted on the Pest Sighting Form. The Pest Sighting Form must be made available to the contractor during treatments or scheduled inspections.
        3. Pest Proofing Form
          1. A Pest Proofing Form should be used by the contractor to communicate possible structural modifications which would improve pest management. During regular inspections the contractor should identify specific locations and conditions within buildings which require attention by IPM Coordinators. Copies of the Pest Proofing Form should be made available to the IPM Coordinator upon completion of inspections.
        4. Record of Treatment
          1. A Record of Treatment form should be completed by the contractor whenever treatment is enacted to correct a pest problem. Details of the treatment such as date, time, building, location, type of pest, method of treatment, and any materials used should be reported on the Record of Treatment Form. Copies of this form should be made available to the IPM Coordinator immediately upon completion of the treatment.
        5. Notification of Pesticide Applications
          1. Contractor will notify IPM Coordinator before treatment with any pesticide is conducted. The only exception being if the pesticide is formulated as a bait or in a containerized bait station no prior notification is necessary. Notification shall include type of material used, building, location, and time of treatment. It is the responsibility of the IPM Coordinator and the Contractor to ensure that all treatments are in compliance with local, state, and federal law regarding notification requirements to parents and students. A well structured mechanism should be in place, regarding proper notification guidelines, prior to contract initiation.
      4. Materials used for service/treatment
        1. No Category I pesticides shall be used on school grounds. EPA Category II pesticides shall be used only after consideration of less toxic alternatives. If pesticides are regarded as being a necessary component of the treatment then the contractor shall use primarily EPA Category III or IV products.
        2. Monitoring devices
          1. Includes those devices which contain no pesticides but collect samples of pests. These are commonly known as sticky traps, capture devices, or pheromone traps.
        3. Any device or product, not excluded above, which has been registered by appropriate regulatory agencies which the contractor has determined is a proper component of an integrated pest management program.
      5. Methods of service/treatment
        1. Contractor's first consideration in all treatments should include non-pesticidal solutions. If treatment requires use of pesticides, contractor shall evaluate the most appropriate method considering potential health hazards of the pest problem and those associated with the treatment.
        2. All methods of service and/or treatment shall be in accordance with Integrated Pest Management.

  5. Scheduling/Timing of service
    1. Timing of Inspections/Monitoring
      1. Inspections by the contractor shall be conducted during regular business hours to facilitate access to buildings and communication between school employees. Additional inspections deemed necessary by the contractor outside of regular business hours should be arranged through the IPM Coordinator.
    2. Timing of Treatments
      1. No pesticide is to be applied in any room or area while in use or occupied by faculty, staff, or students.
      2. Contractor will make attempts at conducting treatments at times such that the potential of faculty, staff, or students being contacted by treatment residues are minimized. Ideally, treatments should be conducted during non-school hours.
      3. Contractor will follow all requirements present on product labels regarding re-entry periods.

  6. Service calls
    1. Service calls will be conducted after IPM Coordinator has contacted the contractor regarding a pest problem which requires immediate attention. The contractor will address service calls using the same procedure as described under "Specified Services".

  7. Pests included/excluded under this contract
    1. Contractor shall adequately suppress the following pests:
      1. Indoor populations of cockroaches, ants, flies, silverfish, wasps, spiders, rodents, or other arthropods not excluded below.
      2. Insects such as red imported fire ants which may nest primarily outdoors but forage around building perimeters and indoors.
    2. Pests excluded in this contract
      1. Vertebrate pests other than rodents
      2. Termites or other wood destroying organisms
      3. Head lice
      4. Pests that primarily feed on outdoor vegetation

  8. Periodic evaluation of contractor's service by IPM Coordinator shall occur no less than three times per year and consist of a review of (a) materials/methods used, (b) level of communication, and (c) pest sightings by school staff.
    1. IPM Coordinator shall review the methods of pest management being utilized based on records which appear on Inspection Forms, Treatment Forms, Pest Proofing Forms, and Record of Treatment Forms. Any concerns regarding contractor's treatment strategies should be communicated to the contractor at this time.
    2. IPM Coordinator shall review all records and forms provided by the contractor for the previous service period and confirm adequate details exist describing the types of service being provided by the contractor. Any changes to documentation forms deemed necessary by the IPM Coordinator should be communicated to the contractor at this time.
    3. IPM Coordinator shall review Pest Sighting forms and anecdotal records to evaluate contractor's ability to address pest sightings by school staff.

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