Paxton Parents Threaten Lawsuit Over Bats in School

School and health officials say they have solved the bat problem at Paxton School, but some parents disagree and are planning a possible lawsuit.

The parents have accused the Walton County School District of exposing children to health risks from the winged rodents and their droppings. The parents also want officials to move their children from parts of the school where bats have been found.

Officials say the bats are gone and so is any health risk at the school in this rural Florida Panhandle town. Paxton is just south of the Florida-Alabama state line about 60 miles northeast of Pensacola. The school has classes from kindergarten through 12th grade.

County Health Department inspection reports from 2004 warned of rabies and respiratory illnesses and one recommended that all students and staff be removed. Department officials say an inspection last week didn't find any signs of bats or their waste.

The lawyer for the parents plans to make a claim for more than $15,000 in negligence damages with the Florida Department of Education and then sue if it's rejected.


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