YELLOW SPRINGS, Ohio (WDTN) — Two Yellow Springs schools and a youth center will close Friday due to widespread incidents of the flu and strep throat.
The City of Yellow Springs also says the John Bryan Youth Center will also close to allow deep cleaning and disinfection.
According to school officials, 23 percent of the student body at McKinney Middle School and Yellow Springs High School were out sick Thursday. Symptoms of the illness are headaches, fever, aches, congestion and chills. There are also reported cases of strep throat as well.
The school says the illness seems to be highly contagious.
It is also affecting the theater department. The school’s musical, The Sound of Music, was set to open Friday, but the administration says they are postponing it.
Julianna, a sixth grader who attends the district’s middle school, told 2 NEWS that several of her friends have been out sick, each for a few days.
“My teacher at the end of the day, she had an announcement – she was talking about keeping our stuff clean,” Julianna said.
About 6 percent of students at the elementary school were absent Thursday, accoridng to district officials. That’s a much lower rate than the middle and high schools, but it’s still high enough to call for thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting all schools in the district, said Mario Basora, superintendent.
“We’re cleaning all of the tables, cafeteria tables, student desks, door knobs, teacher desks, as well as the doors of the classrooms,” he said.
Basora said his daughter, who attends the high school, has come down with the flu and strep throat herself.
The typical absence rate at the middle and high schools is just 4 percent, he added.
“I’ve never called a calamity day for sickness in my career,” Basora said.
Parents who spoke with 2 NEWS said they’re doing what they can to keep their kids protected.
“Part of just being in [a] community, we spread things around, but we’ll do our best to keep them healthy,” said Nacim Sajabi, who has three children in the elementary school. “Make sure they’re washing their hands and eating healthy foods and getting a lot of rest.”
School activities are expected to resume on Saturday, Basora said.
The musical is still set to go on Sunday, although the school says it will make a final determination on Saturday by 6 p.m. Yellow Springs says a confirmation will be published on its theater webpage.
The adjusted schedule has the musical also being performed Thursday, March 14 through Sunday March 17.
Basora is urging parents and students to routinely wash their hands and see a doctor if they’re sick.