High absentee rate closes Meriden school for rest of the week - WFSB 3 Connecticut

High absentee rate closes Meriden school for rest of the week

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St. Joseph School in Meriden will be closed for the rest of the week (WFSB) St. Joseph School in Meriden will be closed for the rest of the week (WFSB)
MERIDEN, CT (WFSB) -

A school in Meriden will be closed for the rest of the week due to an increased amount of absent students.

St. Joseph School officials said they saw a 26 percent absentee rate on Tuesday, which follows several days of a more than 10 percent absentee rate.

According to school officials, the school nurse is required to report the absentee rate if it exceeds 10 percent.

School officials say there has been an increase in cold and flu cases, along with strep throat, pneumonia and general illnesses among students.

The school contacted the Department of Public Health, who confirmed that the school was doing everything right to try to stop the illnesses from spreading, and recommended the school be closed for three days so students can heal and a thorough cleaning can be done.

Wednesday was considered "day one" of the closure. The school will add three extra days to the end of the school year.

There are about 150 students and 30 staff members/teachers at St. Joseph School in Meriden. Officials said roughly 60 percent of teachers/staff have been out sick for at least one day over the past 10 days.

“I can confirm that St. Joseph School in Meriden will be closed the remainder of the week, through Friday, Feb. 4th, due to a high percentage of illness at the school. Twenty-six percent of the student population reported flu-like symptoms along with five faculty members. The decision to close was made after consultation with the Health Department and the Center for Disease Control. While closed, the custodial staff, along with the administrator and school volunteers will  thoroughly disinfect desks, bathrooms, computer keyboards, etc.," said Michael Griffin, superintendent of Catholic Schools, Archdiocese of Hartford.

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