PS/IS 217 on Manhattan’s Roosevelt Island has become infested with rats and parents are holding their children out of the school until the problem is fixed. That may be easier said than done. It is estimated that they would have to kill 60 rats every week just to maintain status quo. Rats carry diseases and they have infiltrated the cafeteria and practically every part of the school. One girl claimed she counted 23 rats in a space of just 5 minutes.
Students and parents at PS/IS 217 on Manhattan’s Roosevelt Island have been shocked by the explosion of rats on school grounds in recent weeks, with the rodent colony estimated at over 250.
The school serves international students in grades pre-kindergarten through eight, and holds classes until the end of June.
‘My 7-year-old has seen the rats repeatedly, at one point she counted 23 rats within a matter of five minutes, right by the school wall, by her cafeteria,’ parent Erka Kosta told Pix11, saying she kept her child home on Monday because of the problem.
‘I am concerned about infections. I am concerned about the fact that the place where you see the rats is right outside the school cafeteria,’ Kosta said.
Community leader Frank Farance told the local station that garbage from the school cafeteria had likely attracted the rats.
‘The colony has about 250 rats according to the Department of Health estimates and they grow on the double every month,’ Farance said.
‘Right now just to kill them, we have to be killing on the order of 60 rats a week just to keep up with the pace of their growth.’