Southwest Local School District

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Academic and Social Growth for ALL Students, Every Day!

Health Department Issues Flu Guidelines

Building administrators received an email late this week from the Hamilton County Department of Public Health. As I’m sure that you have seen on the news (and for many of you, experienced yourselves), the area is experiencing very high levels of the flu and flu-like illnesses.

When combined with the stomach bug and strep throat, which are also “going around,” we have a lot of students and families battling to stay healthy.
We want students here as much as possible. We also want to limit how these diseases spread so less students are impacted. Please use the Department of Health’s guidelines, listed below, to determine whether your child should come to school. If you have not gotten the vaccine, you are encouraged to do so as it limits your chances of getting the flu by 30%-60%.

If your child is sick (sent home from school or kept at home), please note that the Department of Health standards align with our school and district policies that require students to be fever free and not vomiting for a minimum of 24 hours. For example, if a student was sent home with a fever from school (or vomiting), they should not return to school the following day.

 • Teach your children to wash their hands often with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub. Adults can set a good example by doing this too.

• Teach your children not to share personal items like drinks, food or unwashed utensils, and to cover their coughs and sneezes with tissues. If tissues are not available, coughs and sneezes can be covered with the elbow, arm or sleeve instead of hands.
• Know the signs and symptoms of the flu. Symptoms of the flu include fever (100 degrees Fahrenheit or 37.8 degrees Celsius or higher), cough, sore throat, a runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, and feeling very tired. Some people may also vomit or have diarrhea. Symptoms usually start suddenly.
• Keep sick children at home for at least 24 hours after the fever is gone without using fever-reducing drugs. By keeping children home when they have a fever, we can reduce the number of new people who may get infected.
• Do not send children to school or child care if they are sick. Children who are determined to be sick while at school or child care will be sent home.
• Check with your doctor about getting yourself and your children vaccinated for seasonal influenza.