School Takes Flu Precautions - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

School Takes Flu Precautions

By Al Pefley   email

Palm Beach Gardens, FL  (WFLX)

Concern about the H1N1 virus causes some schools in our area to take unprecedented steps to protect youngsters.  The Weiss School sent an e-mail to parents over the weekend, asking them to watch their kids carefully for signs of any illness and be on the lookout for symptoms such as fever, coughing and sore throat.  The school is taking other precautions.

Every time there's a class change, and the students have a five minute break to get to their next class, the teacher doesn't get much of a break.

That's because the teacher is busy in the classroom, wiping down all the desks, and even the door handles with disinfectant wipes,  getting ready for the next group of youngsters trying to protect them from the H1N1 virus.

"They're not really too concerned about it. They're basically following what their parents tell them to do.  So nobody's panicking? Nobody's panicking, no," said Michelle Abrishami, a third grade  language arts teacher.

At The Weiss School,  a private school in Palm Beach Gardens,  the concern over H1N1 formerly known as the swine flu, has everyone's attention.

They've got bottles of hand sanitizer gel in every classroom, and they're disinfecting the desks between every class, instead of just once at the end of the day as they used to. 

"A lot of our students are bringing in hand sanitizers, wipes and they're actually sharing it with their classmates as well," said Dr. Denise Spirou, assistant head of school.

The teachers have been instructed to keep a close eye on the children, and anyone who appears sick will have to be picked up by their parents and sent home.

Dr. Spirou says the 6, 7 and 8th graders also had planned a field trip to New York City this week to visit museums, parks and other places.  Most of the students who signed up decided to go anyway, and left for New York this morning, despite the H1N1 outbreak that has hit the U.S.

But about 10 of the students canceled their plans and decided not to go on the field trip, due to concerns about the virus.

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