Parents voice concern about bedbugs in Dillon County School District 4

DILLON, SC (WBTW) – A concerned parent reached out to News13 about bedbugs at her child’s school in Dillon County School District Four.

Dillon Four Superintendent Ray Rogers says the district is proactive with treating bedbug or lice outbreaks, but one parent feels the district is not transparent and wants other families to know so the entire community can work together to get rid of the problem.

“When I did find them, I treated and talked to the school,” said parent Amy Mckenzie.

Amy Mckenzie says her two Lake View Elementary students keep getting bedbugs.

“I was afraid that I was, the one infesting other people. I didn’t want to be the person that didn’t speak up. I found out the school [has] known for so long and didn’t tell anyone. I wonder how long they’ve been infected,” questions Mckenzie.

Mckenzie says she talked with about 10 other parents that have the parasites, and she hopes families treat their homes to prevent them from spreading.

“My main concern is that the bedbugs will be passed back and forth on the children, on their backpacks, clothes or in the classroom, that no matter what we do, we won’t get rid of them,” said Mckenzie.

Superintendent Ray Rogers says last month, a teacher at the school saw what she thought was a bedbug. The principal and school nurse were contacted, then the school maintenance department fumigated the three classrooms the same day.

“The longer it goes, the more it could be infected. So, you don’t want to waste any time,” said Ray Rogers, Dillon School District Four Superintendent.

Rogers says the district usually notifies the parent of the child twice; once when they find a bug or bites, then again when the classroom is cleaned, but the district will not send out a letter to other parents.

“It’s hard to contact people that… you would upset them about something they don’t have any concern over,” said Superintendent Rogers. “If you take care of it then overnight, when they come back, the room is cleared. It has to be brought in from somewhere. Bedbugs are brought in from somewhere.”

Mckenzie hopes the school and parents in the area treat the bugs over the summer to prevent them from coming back next school year.

“A lot of people are ashamed to have them. I’m not happy about it, but I want to get rid of them. I don’t want to be bitten anymore,” said Mckenzie.

Superintendent Rogers says over the summer, crews will clean all the schools. If they notice a problem with bedbugs, they will treat problem areas.