October 12, 2009
Dear Nokomis Montessori families,
I’m writing to you today to make sure you have the most up to date information on a situation that has come to have an impact on our school. You and your student are the cornerstones of our community and keeping you up to date on issues that affect us is an important goal for us.
In the past few days, we have had a number of students who have shown symptoms of influenza- like illness. While there has been a lot of media attention on the influenza known as H1N1, we don’t definitively know whether the illnesses we have seen in our school are that strain. What we
do know is that no matter if these symptoms are linked directly to H1N1 or not, the treatment for all influenza is similar:
- People with influenza-type illnesses should stay home until at least 24 hours after there is no longer a fever or signs of a fever, even without the help of medicine. Children under 5-years-old who are experiencing symptoms of influenza-like illness should stay home for at least seven days after there is no longer a fever or signs of a fever Keeping them in a separate room from other household members when possible.
- Properly cover coughs and sneezes while cleaning hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub often and especially after coughing or sneezing.
- Monitor the health of the sick child and other household members by checking for fever and other symptoms of flu including a fever of at least 100-degrees Fahrenheit.
- Make sure sick household members get plenty of rest and drink clear fluids such as water, broth, sports drinks or electrolyte beverages for infants.
- Check with your doctor, including asking about proper medications and any special care needed for members of your household who may be at high risk for complications from influenza, including:
- children under 5 years old,
- pregnant women,
- anyone with chronic medical condition, such as asthma, diabetes or heart disease
- people at least 65 years old.
At this time, we are not closing school. Having some of our students becoming ill is not unexpected and Saint Paul Public Schools nurses have been in regular contact with outside health professionals. We are cooperating with them and getting constant feedback on how to best proceed as our community works to best prevent the spread of influenza and to best care for students and staff who have influenza-like illness. Health professionals continue to tell us that in
addition to the tips I’ve already listed, the best defense is to regularly wash our hands.
Be assured that providing a safe learning environment is the highest priority us. If there are further updates, we will let our community know though letters, phone messages and the websites of our school (www.nokomis.spps.org) and our district (www.spps.org).
As always, if you have questions regarding this, feel free to call me at (651) 293-8857.
Thank- you for your support of your student and Nokomis Montessori.
Melissa McCollor, Principal