Board Contracts Protection for Schools

Ken MClemore

HOPE – The Hope Public Schools Board agreed in a called Zoom session Monday to a contract with the Arkansas franchisee of a Georgia-based pathogen protection product for the disinfection of HPS facilities and buses in advance of the start of school Aug. 24 as the district continues to deal with the effects of the COVID-19 crisis.

Tim Martin of Henderson, Ar., told the board PreventX 24/7, patented by Georgia-based Ecovasive, bonds with surfaces to form a barrier against pathogens such as Coronavirus.

“It bonds at a molecular level and essentially forms tiny spikes that puncture the cell and gives you a barrier,” Martin said. “This has been used in Arkansas for a few months; it’s been in general usage for many years.”

He said the treatment lasts 90 days, leaves no residue on most surfaces, has no offensive odor, and is not an allergen.

“It has a light, pleasant odor that disappears as it dries; usually, in about 10 minutes,” Martin said.

He said the treatment is used in the Southeastern Conference of NCAA Division I as a preventative of Staph infections in athletic locker rooms. Martin said six school districts in Arkansas and the Hope-based Southwest Arkansas Education Cooperative have contracted with him for treatments.

“There are over 30 years of independent studies and laboratory testing that have been performed on the technology showing effectiveness against viruses and pathogens,” Mitch Hambrick, owner of PreventX 24/7 patent-holder Ecovasive Southeast Infection Control, wrote in the proposal to the district.

HPS Superintendent Dr. Bobby Hart said the contract calls for four treatments annually; and, closure of any campus by state mandate allows the district to retain rights to unused treatments.

Dr. Hart said the $39,420 contract calls for treatment of 600,000 square feet of HPS space, plus all 40 HPS school buses. He said the contract will be paid with CARES Act federal funding.

Also, Monday, the board approved replacement hires of two teachers at Clinton Primary School; a junior high football coach/teacher; a high school golf/softball coach/teacher; and a paraprofessional for the ABC preschool program.

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