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Schools still watching flu absences

Farmington schools have seen a slight decrease in daily attendance numbers but they are staying consistent throughout the district … and at this point are not dipping to alarming levels.

Farmington Interim Superintendent Jerome Watson said earlier this week that attendance numbers in the district are staying around 89 to 90 percent . Last Thursday the school had a slightly lower attendance but he said that could be due to the early out for parent-teacher conferences.

Washington-Franklin Elementary has seen the lowest so far, however Tuesday they went back up to 84.6 percent. The highest percentage of attendance Tuesday for a school in the district was 92.8 percent.

District attendance rates are comparable to this point in the school year in previous years, school officials report. Cases of flu-like symptoms reported to the district by parents and medical personnel have primarily been found to be Type A Influenza.

According to the St. Francois County Health Department the area is experiencing only a slight increase in the number of influenza type illnesses reported by all schools in the county. The Farmington school district is following guidelines set by the federal Center for Disease Control and the health department, which include asking that students stay home until at least 24 hours after they no longer have a fever — 100 degrees Fahrenheit or 38 degrees Celsius — or symptoms of a fever (chills, feel very warm, have flushed appearance or are sweating).

Earlier this school year information was sent home regarding the symptoms of H1N1 along with precautionary steps. Basic hygiene practices include washing hands regularly and covering the mouth and nose with a shirt sleeve or tissue when coughing or sneezing. This helps to minimize the spread of flu germs.

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