Letter to Parents about Influenza Virus

February 24, 2020

Dear Parent/Guardian,

As you know, the influenza virus is widespread across the U.S. at this time and is currently a concern for all of us. The flu comes on suddenly and symptoms can include fever, fatigue, headache, cough, sore throat, nasal congestion and body aches.

The following steps can help prevent you and your child from getting the flu.

  1. Get the flu vaccine.
  2. Wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds (as long as it takes to sing the Happy Birthday song twice).
  3. Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue and throw it away. If you don’t have a tissue, cough into your upper sleeve, not your hands.

If your child becomes sick with the flu, he or she should stay home to get plenty of rest and drink lots of fluids. Children with the flu should remain at home until they are symptom free for 24 hours (that is, until they have no fever without the use of fever-control medicines and they feel well for 24 hours.)

You may also know that the CDC and NYS Department of Health have issued a health advisory with information and guidance regarding Novel Coronavirus. Signs and symptoms of the virus include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Please note that only those persons who have a history of travel from China or who have had close contact with someone who has traveled from China, within 14 days of the onset of symptoms, would be considered at risk for contracting the virus.

If your child becomes sick at school with flu/viral symptoms including fever and cough, he or she may be asked to wear a paper face mask while awaiting dismissal to a parent/guardian.

Please feel free to contact your school health office with any questions or concerns.