Mt. Pleasant schools closed due to illness - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Mt. Pleasant schools closed due to illness

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MT. PLEASANT (WJRT) -

(01/11/12) - Tuesday, the Mt. Pleasant School District had around 40 students home sick in one building.

Wednesday, that number climbed to 206 in addition to seven staff members.

As a result, the school and all the rest in the district will be closed Thursday and Friday.

"It's be like a 72 hour incubation period and you might have this for one to three days. And so as we looked at that and looked at the shared transportation, teachers that would move from building to building, and siblings at home with these elementary students, we said wow how can we stop the spread of this," said Superintendent Michael Pung.

The problem is the rapid spread of what's believed to be the norovirus.

According to the CDC, the norovirus is spread from person to person, through contaminated food or water, and by touching contaminated surfaces.

That makes a place like a school an ideal place for the virus to spread.

Of the more than 200 kids home sick Wednesday, many of them are likely experiencing issues such as diarrhea, vomiting and stomach pain.

In the Mt. Pleasant School District, the administration is trying to be proactive and stop the spread before more students are infected.

They are working on the assumption that the illness is the norovirus, however Pung tells us they are waiting for official confirmation from the health department which is running tests.

As a result, the district will be closed Thursday and Friday for a thorough cleaning.

"Maintenance and custodial have already met with the health department to see, to make sure their cleaning techniques and their fluids and things, are appropriate for what they figure this is and they're going to clean all of buildings from end to end, everything that students come in contact with, with all of the equipment, the interior of the buses. Everything will be cleaned and ready for a new start next Tuesday morning," Pung said.

Monday is a scheduled day off.

In addition, all sporting events and other activities are canceled.

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