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Maryland Public Schools Achieve IPM STAR Certification
(Beyond Pesticides, June 28, 2003)
Anne Arundel County Public Schools (AACPS) was awarded the IPM STAR certificate on June 16, 2004 from the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Institute of North America in recognition of its comprehensive school pest management program. AACPS is the fourth school system in the country to achieve this recognition.

IPM STAR certification is a rigorous process that includes an on-site inspection by an independent professional trained in IPM. The inspector examines the history of pest problems, the condition of buildings and grounds, as well as any pesticides used in the past three years. Schools must have an IPM policy and plan in place to guide administrators and staff as they respond to pest issues, including preventing and avoiding problems before they occur.

The certification program is operated with funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program through the National Foundation for IPM Education. The EPA officially recognized the AACPS Division on Operations and Maintenance on June 16, 2004 in Annapolis, MD.

For reports on other STAR Certification awards see: Second School System in Nation Certified IPM and Pittsburgh School District's Pest Management Program Gets Certified IPM. To learn more about AACPS’s school IPM programs, contact Daniel La Hart at (410) 360-0138.

Anne Arundel County Public Schools’ pest management program is one of the 27 school districts in 19 states that are successfully implementing IPM programs featured in Safer Schools: Achieving A Healthy Learning Environment Through Integrated Pest Management, a report by Beyond Pesticides and the School Pesticide Reform Coalition.

TAKE ACTION: Contact Beyond Pesticides and learn how to get your school to adopt an IPM program by:
(1) Identifying the school's pest management policy;
(2) Educating yourself and evaluating the program;
(3) Organizing the school community;
(4) Working with school decision-makers; and,
(5) Becoming a watchdog and establishing an IPM Committee.

For more information and resources, see Beyond Pesticides' Children and Schools issue pages.