This week is showing the highest rate of flu transmission during this flu season, that’s according to the Texas Department of State Health Services who say this week the intensity is high and widespread.
That’s also one of the reasons why a local school district closed it’s doors for the remainder of the week — undergoing a deep cleaning after hundreds of students called out sick.
The Acting Superintendent for Fairfield ISD says 18% of it’s 1,800 students called in sick on Wednesday forcing him to cancel classes. That’s only the second time he’s had to do that in his 45 years in education.
“When the kids come in sick at some point they have to be separated so we took the opportunity to take a four day weekend to get the kids healthy and the buildings ready,” said Price.
The flu, strep throat, and stomach virus — those are the illnesses responsible for the closure of Fairfield ISD.
“Some of the kids had two of the three. But there’s no rhyme or reason, some of them had one, some of them had two but all three of those were the diagnosis that we got from the doctors,” said Price.
Doctors say it’s no wonder — seeing as we are in the middle of peak flu season.
“The flu virus lives longer in the cold so the chillier it gets the more people flood inside and are around each other more and they just spread germs, especially at schools,” said Dr. Michelle Law, Waco FastMed Urgent Care Clinic.
Doctor Law says the best way to prevent the widespread of illnesses is to be cautious.
“Hand washing is key, staying home when you are sick and making sure that all the surfaces are nice and clean and prevention is always important with flu vaccines,” said Dr. Law.
“Good hygene is washing those hands repeatedly throughout the day and then also if they have the flu it takes 4 or 5 days for that cycle to end, if they keep them out a couple of days and then send them back they may appear to be okay but they are still contagious so make sure those kids are good and healthy when they come back,” said Price.
And, while students get better — the school will be doing it’s part.
“We also hand wipe down every desk, door knobs, I mean the deep cleaning is just much more detailed than in other situations,” said Price.
“That’s super important too to make sure that all the surfaces especially frequently used surfaces are cleaned often,” said Dr. Law.
Students and faculty will go back to classes on Monday — the Acting Superintendent saying he hopes and prays that four days of separation will break the cycle.