Parents in American Samoa are questioning why health and education officials took so long to inspect schools, with unsanitary conditions resulting in the delay of the start of the new school year.
The Health Department recommended that 12 schools, including 10 government schools, be closed after inspections uncovered unsafe conditions ranging from rodent-infected kitchens, poor water supply, and improper ventilation.
The opening of the new school year, due on Monday August 12, will now start on August 19.
Our correspondent in American Samoa, Monica Miller, says schools have been on break for months, and parents are wondering why checks weren't done earlier.
"Right now there has been no explanation as to why the department of education itself had not done an inspection and seen that there were a lot of schools that were not up to par to open. There's a lot of comments being made at the department of health as well as to why they did not carry out these inspections earlier on and then got the department of education to fix these problems."
Monica Miller says however, parents are very happy that when their children do go back to school, the classrooms will be safe and clean.