Two Bay Area schools closed due to H1N1

October 23, 2009 10:11:11 PM PDT
Two Bay Area schools have been shut down because of the H1N1 flu. One is shut down because a little girl who died had the H1N1 virus, and the other is closed because dozens of students and faculty were showing H1N1 symptoms.

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School officials, out of an abundance of concern, cancelled Friday night's football game at Vacaville Christian High school.

There was not a teenager in sight in the halls of Vacaville Christian High School and the reason is an outbreak of flu-like symptoms that affected 43 out of 300 students and a large group of faculty.

"It was going too rapidly, especially through my faculty. One-third of my faculty in high school were portraying symptoms. All we tried to do is when we saw this great incidence, let's see if we can stem it," said Paul Harrell from Vacaville Christian High School.

A group of students went ahead with a planned field trip to Sacramento, but most other activities have been canceled until at least Monday.

"I think we'd like to see it open as soon as possible, but of course you'd like to see safety as the number one condition. I think that that's going to be evaluated probably on a daily basis," said parent Sheilah Tucker.

Freshman Raquel Tucker did not get sick.

"I was wiping down my desk that I sat at everyday, and I was using hand sanitizer whenever I could, like after I ate or before I did classwork or something," she said.

Meantime, Vacaville's Browns Valley Elementary School is also closed a day after health officials confirmed that a first grader who died Sunday did have the H1N1 virus. Parents were informed of the closure by telephone.

"The students will be coming back on Tuesday. However, another local connect message will be sent out to parents leting them know that if their child is ill, especially if they have a fever, we do not want them back in school on Tuesday," said Superintendent John Aycock.

Some think Browns Valley should have closed sooner.

"I think Thursday they might have closed it. I don't know, it's hard to decide," said grandparent Dolores Novak.

The Browns Valley closure was triggered by two things, the confirmation of the H1N1 virus in the little girl who died and the high absentee rate at that school on Thursday when more than 25 percent of students were absent from school.

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