|H1N1 report closes MCA|
|Friday, August 7, 2009|
By JENNIFER HORTON
McClain Christian Academy is closed today (Friday) after a second grade student exhibited symptoms associated with the H1N1 virus, or swine flu.
Donna Shaffer, director of MCA, said Thursday afternoon that the decision was made after the child’s pediatrician made the recommendation.
"The pediatrician made the recommendation that we take a three-day weekend," she said, to give the child time to get better and also to give officials time to disinfect the school facility and wipe down doorknobs, desks, etc. The MCA Back to School Swim set for tonight has also been cancelled.
Shaffer noted that other children had been in school and others absent with fluctuating fevers this week, so officials decided the best course was to cancel school today.
"We’d rather err on the side of safety," she said.
As for the second grade girl who may have contracted the H1N1 flu, Shaffer noted, "Our prayers are going out for her right now. She is very sick."
She emphasized that the young girl’s illness has not been confirmed as H1N1 flu and that it will take several days for tests to come back.
Teachers called parents to inform them of the closure and a letter was also sent home explaining the school’s action.The letter said in part, "To err on the side of cautiousness, we have decided to take the most conservative approach to ensure the safety and wellness of our children. Therefore, we will not have school tomorrow, August 7th. Your child’s teacher will be in touch with for more information on when school will resume."
The letter also recommends frequent washing of your hands either with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand cleanser and to cover your mouth if you cough or sneeze.
If your child has trouble breathing, bluish skin color, fever with rash and difficulty waking up or not interacting, you should seek medical care as soon as possible. Adults who have trouble breathing, pain or pressure in the chest, severe or persistent vomiting, confusion and/or a fever greater than 102 degrees should also seek medical care.
MCA began the 2009-2010 school year on Monday, Aug. 3.