Flu Outbreak Easing At North Texas Middle School With Hundreds Of Absences

IRVING, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – The flu is hitting students hard at Coppell Middle School West.

Coppell ISD said more than 350 students were absent Monday.

The district said about 325 students didn’t come to school on Tuesday, reportedly either sick with the flu or flu-like symptoms.

In a letter to parents, the district said it’s performing a deep cleaning of the building and that the school remains open and operational.

FLU GUIDE

CISD spokesperson Amanda Simpson told CBS 11 the attendance rate Tuesday was 94.21 percent for the entire district.  The average is 96 to 97 percent daily.  Tuesday’s overall CISD attendance number is not unusual for the district for January.  It is one school experiencing the increase, but not happening district wide, Simpson said.

Here is the letter Coppell Middle School West Principal Dr. Emily Froese sent to students, staff and parents:

Dear CMS Westies,

CMS West is seeing an increase in student and staff absences due to flu and flu-like symptoms that began late last week and spiked today (Jan. 28.) Our school nurse is working with CISD Health Services to monitor these illnesses reports.  Though there is an unusually high amount of absences today,  our school remains and will remain open and operational as usual.

I want to take this opportunity to share some reminders about Coppell ISD’s Health Attendance Guidelines with you, which are available here. These guidelines state, “The flu is a virus and is easily passed to others. The main symptom of the flu is fever and can include body aches, chills, cough and congestion, sore throat, or vomiting. Your child should stay home until fever-free for 24 hours without the aid of a fever suppressing over the counter medication (such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen).”

The actions of students and staff also can help prevent or slow the incidence of flu. According to the CDC, the first line of defense is getting the flu shot. Other preventative measures include covering coughs and sneezes, washing hands and keeping sick people away from others.  

Our custodial team with Aramark also is being intentional about performing a deep cleaning of our building to ensure all areas are thoroughly disinfected and ready for our students to learn.

We understand that recovery from the flu and other illnesses often takes several days. As a reminder, the state of Texas does require the district to send parents a mandatory email notice after three unexcused absences within a four-week period in order to combat truancy, especially in secondary students. Please note that all excused absences will be corrected in the parent portal once a note is received after a student returns to school.

As always, thank you for your support of our school community.

Sincerely,

Dr. Emily Froese

Principal