Steps taken to curb H1N1 as flu season nears


In line with school districts around the country, administrators of the Mountain View Whisman School District have released a set of guidelines to help prevent the spread of H1N1 among schoolchildren this year.

"We want to keep the schools open to students and functioning in a normal manner during this upcoming flu season," said Superintendent Maurice Ghysels in a letter to parents. "But, we need your help to do this."

Because the flu is spread easily among young students, the district asks that parents help their children keep the following guidelines in mind:

■ Wash hands for at least 30 seconds with soap and water

■ Cover coughs and sneezes with tissues or elbows instead of hands

■ Do not share food or personal items

■ Know the signs and symptoms of the flu, including high fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, body aches, headache and feeling tired

The district asks that parents keep their children home from school for at least seven days after symptoms appear, or until fever has disappeared (without the help of medicine) for at least 24 hours.

If the flu becomes more prevalent, the district may take additional steps, such as symptom screening or dismissing students from school for at least seven days if they show symptoms.

— Katherine Tolentino


Like this comment
Posted by parent
a resident of another community
on Sep 14, 2009 at 2:50 pm

Oh please.

Students receive a long list of school supplies every year, and hand sanitizer is never on that list. One would think the district would be requesting donations of bottles of hand sanitizer, that they would make sure it's in every classroom, and they would instruct their teachers to ensure students use it.

My kids have received NOTHING in the way of 1 - being given time to wash their hands or 2 - access to hand sanitizer at school.

Of course, they could wash their hands in the bathroom, during recess or lunch, along with approximately 500 other students in the same 15 minute timeframe.

I would LOVE to be proven wrong on this. I would love to be told that every classroom has hand sanitizer, and that every student gets a squirt at the beginning of the day, before and after recess, before and after lunch, and before leaving, along with after bathroom visits.

Just one more in a long history of saying one thing and doing another.

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Posted by another parent
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 14, 2009 at 8:15 pm

I send my child to school with a small bottle of hand sanitizer in their backpack. It's there everyday because I feel that it is my responsibility to help take care of this issue. Teachers have enough on their plate and as much as hand washing is important, my child knows to wash their hands before eating and after using the restroom. She makes it her job to take care of without being told.
I was also very pleased to find that my child's teacher does have not just one bottle but a bottle of sanitizer next to each box of kleenex (the teacher apparently paid for all of it because parents were not asked to add it to the list of supplies).
I won't wait for it to run out, I have already purchased a bottle to contribute to the classroom to be used as needed by all of the students. Do we need to be so self serving that we can't just take it upon ourselves to contribute newly needed supplies for our kids? What a small cost to help out with what could potentially be a horrible cold and flu season.

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Posted by parent
a resident of another community
on Sep 15, 2009 at 3:21 pm

another parent,

I couldn't agree more and because the district does not ask parents to donate nor provide teachers with hand sanitizer, I too bought some for my teachers, who already spend thousands out of pocket for school supplies. I would like to think that all children bring and use hand sanitizer but if you spend much time at school you'll see that's not typical.

My point was the district office is has a lot of nice-sounding statements on a wide range of issues, but their actions often don't match their words.

Go to a school board meeting sometime and judge for yourself.

Like this comment
Posted by Ken
a resident of Cuernavaca
on Sep 15, 2009 at 5:17 pm

If the district would stop paying so much for over-paid administrators, then maybe there would be money for hand sanitizer.

I agree with parent, the district jefes always have nice-sounding statements, but in the end they are empty ones. It's ultimately the public's fault for putting up with it for so long.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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