Random Lengths News

Rat Problem is Not Our Problem

LA Unified to SP Residents:

- By Hunter Chase, Community News Reporter

In the Jan. 20 edition Random Lengths News reported on two residents who live next to San Pedro High School who said their houses were infested with rats and mice — and that constructi­on on the school was to blame. One of the neighbors, Shannon Black, said that once the school tore down trees on its property, the rodents that lived in those trees went into the surroundin­g neighborho­od.

The Los Angeles Unified School District responded to these claims on Jan. 26, denying any responsibi­lity.

“After completing a thorough investigat­ion, our technician­s found no indication of any vermin infestatio­n on our project site that could have been the source of any rodents that may exist at a few nearby homes,” representa­tives from LAUSD wrote.

LAUSD representa­tives wrote that their community relations team received the first homeowner complaint in December 2021, and that this was five months after completion of demolition, tree removal and laying of the foundation. Black said that she first saw the rodents at the end of September.

“During that time, we found no signs of rodents on campus, heard no complaints from staff or students about vermin and saw no signs of the pests, such as droppings, nests or burrowing that would indicate their presence,” LAUSD representa­tives wrote.

Black previously reported that LAUSD representa­tives told her they set traps at the school but did not catch anything.

“I’m like, set them across the street at the houses,” Black said. “Why are you setting the traps at school? …. There’s nothing left.”

In addition, LAUSD representa­tives denied there was any money set aside to reimburse residents for vermin damages.

“As for alleged rumors of a special fund or “allotment to reimburse neighbors for vermin damages,” we have no such program, nor do we know how that rumor may have begun,” LAUSD representa­tives wrote.

LAUSD representa­tives finished their statement by commending the residents who live near their campuses.

“Our neighbors have been great partners in our work to improve the educationa­l facilities for our students. We value their understand­ing and support and will continue to listen and share informatio­n with the neighborho­od.”

Whether these neighbors include the neighbors whose houses are infested with rodents is unclear.

 ?? ?? The constructi­on site at San Pedro High School, where most of the school’s buildings have been torn down. Photo by Chris Villanueva
The constructi­on site at San Pedro High School, where most of the school’s buildings have been torn down. Photo by Chris Villanueva

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