CMS classrooms closed off final week of school after teacher bitten by bat
A portion of Charlotte Middle School was closed off during the last week of school after a teacher was bitten by a bat. Students will be allowed in the building today to turn in books and pick up report cards but several classrooms were closed off this week after Robert Capes was apparently bitten on the hand by what was reported as a baby bat. Schools Director Johnny Chandler has said the school has been dealing with the bat problem for some time. Maintenance personnel have stayed in the school overnight trying to determine where the bats are getting into the school and an exterminator was called in to try to get rid of the bats. But school officials say their efforts are hampered because the bats are protected under the Federal Migratory Act and it is illegal to kill them or destroy their nesting places between April and August. The school is awaiting a permit from the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency to humanely remove the bats. Following the bite suffered by Capes in a science classroom, the sixth grade hall was blocked off to protect students, faculty and visitors from encounters with the bats. School officials are hoping to determine the number of bats in the building by removing ceiling tiles and assessing the presence of droppings. Capes is undergoing a series of vaccinations to prevent rabies.