HomeHealth & BehaviorHealth & Nutrition

Schools, the flu and vaccines: What You Need to Know

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By GreatSchools Staff

What should I do if I suspect my child has the swine flu?

Make sure you keep your child at home, and alert your school of his absence. Don't send him to school or daycare. You should call your doctor, but there is no need to go to the doctor's office or the emergency room or to have your child tested unless his symptoms are severe (high fever, difficulty breathing or other symptoms that don't improve after several days). In most reported cases, symptoms have been mild and gone away without medical intervention. Do give your child fluids and over-the-counter pain relievers as necessary.

If my school shuts down or if I have to keep my child at home, how do I make sure he doesn't fall behind in his schoolwork?

Ask your child's teacher if there are assignments he can do, books he can read or Web-based learning he can engage in to keep up. In California, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell is urging schools that are closed to provide learning packets, distance learning or Web-based instruction for their students.

If my school is supposed to give state standardized tests and it shuts down, what will happen?

The state Departments of Education and the U.S. Department of Education are working closely with school districts to be flexible and make accommodations for schools that are closed during this period. They'll reschedule the tests as necessary.

Comments from readers

"I don't have a family plan and i do not know what i am going todo if my school closes down. HELPPP MEEE :("
"Please check the CDC website for an update on school closing policies - CDC is no longer recommending school closings with just one case of H1N1. There have been numerous cases of H1N1 in Fayette County, Georgia schools and there have been no school closings. However, the schools have taken considerable measures to keep the children separated and healthy, and the Health Dept. has been visiting and monitoring the schools on a regular basis."
"thany you so much,this is really helpful to me to know what to do for the SWINE FLU, not just me but to the others, Again THANK YOU always LASHA-WIL. Wahiawa,Hawaii."
"My son tells me there are a few children sneezing all day long in his class and the teacher never reminds those few to sneeze into their arm or even wash their hands. My son has been reminded of this over and over so it's bothersome to him. He's too shy to speak up and just feels the teacher knows best. "
"I really appreciate all this information and in the way it is explained. Thank you so much in the name of our whole family."
"thank you very much for this information,it was extremely useful"