• Are You Ready For Flu Season?

    Posted by CISD on 9/9/2009 4:00:00 PM

    Coppell ISD is and here's how parents can help at home…

    The health and safety of the students in the Coppell Independent School District is always a top priority and with the school year just beginning, health officials are already predicting the start of an early flu season this year. The Dallas County Health and Human Services Center for Disease Control and Prevention believes, “…including a few preventative measures into your daily routine could limit your exposure to germs that may cause an influenza infection.”

    Attendance numbers across the district are strong with no abnormalities being reported in the number of absences. A small number of flu cases have been reported so far and they seem to be randomly dispersed throughout the district. Those students have been/are being kept at home until they recover fully and we will continue to keep our school community informed should any significant illness patterns be identified at the campus level. Coppell ISD appreciates the teamwork between the staff and our families regarding this health issue and encourages continued, open dialogue as the flu season approaches.

    Here are steps currently being taken by the school district's Departments of Student and Custodial Services to minimize exposure:

    1. Nurses are making announcements and discussing, with students and staff, the most effective hand washing techniques including the regular use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers.
    2. Nurses are asking parents to keep children who have experienced flu-like symptoms with a fever at home for 24 hours once the child is fever free and until they no longer have a fever without the use of fever-reducing medication (including physician prescribed medications such as Tamiflu).
    3. Custodians are receiving ongoing training with regard to special cleanings utilizing universal cleaning procedures as well as how to take care of themselves to avoid exposure to the bacteria within their work environment.
    4. Custodians have been specially trained on the use of the germicide, Sani-Master, to eliminate germs within a classroom and must wear protective rubber gloves when applying the product. Once the gloves are removed, hands are washed thoroughly.

    These are some common-sense ways parents can support the district's proactive stance against the flu:

    • Educate your child to use their elbow to shield their cough or sneeze properly. If they use a tissue, they should throw it away immediately after use and wash their hands.
    • Teach your child good hand hygiene, encouraging them to wash with soap and water as often as necessary (esp. after touching high hand contact areas such as countertops, key boards, pens, hand rails, etc.). They should wash for at least 20 seconds or as long as it takes to sing the “Happy Birthday” song two times. Using an alcohol-based bacterial cleansing agent is also very effective.
    • Teach your child to avoid sharing toothbrushes, towels, drinking cups or eating utensils with others including siblings.
    • Reinforce the importance of eating healthy, drinking plenty of water, and getting plenty of sleep as proactive measures against the flu virus.
    • Follow public health advice regarding school closures, avoiding crowds, and other social distancing measures.
    • Get your family vaccinated for seasonal flu and 2009 H1N1 flu when vaccines are available (mid-October).
    • When your child returns to school after flu-like illness, they should continue to practice good respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene. Since some may shed the flu virus before feeling ill or some with the flu may not have a fever, it is important that all students cover their cough and wash their hands often.
    Any questions should be directed to the nurse on your child's campus or to the CISD Student Services Department. Visit the Dallas County Health and Human Services website at http://www.dallascounty.org/ for more information regarding the H1N1 virus and public awareness campaign. Please help Coppell ISD continue to provide a safe and healthy learning environment for all students and staff members.
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