Hoover Elementary School here in Iowa City has had a longstanding problem with cockroaches, and the school district has recently been trying to address it with a stepped-up regimen of pesticide treatments. Another parent asked the school for information about the pesticides, and I thought it made sense to post that information here, in case others were curious.
School staff identified the pesticides as Talstar (information here and here), Zoecon Gentrol IGR Concentrate (information here and here), and Suspend SC (information here and here).
I know that people can hardly function in modern life without being exposed to all kinds of synthetic chemicals, and that we generally have little choice but to trust the government to ensure that we aren’t harmed by them. I don’t have any reason to think that these pesticides are creating any health risks; nor do I feel capable of evaluating that question. Especially because the spraying is occurring more frequently than would be typical (every couple of weeks, from what I gather), I figure it’s better just to put the information out there. If any of you have any particular knowledge of this field, feel free to chime in in the comments.