Illnesses shut Dickson Public Schools down for the week

Published: Feb. 22, 2017 at 10:29 PM CST
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DICKSON, Okla. (KXII)-- Dickson Public Schools will be closed for the rest of the week, with 20% of the student population out with the flu and other contagious viruses.

This includes Shawna Lacy, whose four children have all had the flu in the last month.

"My kids wouldn't eat, wouldn't drink, wouldn't want to do anything," Lacy said. "It's awful. As a parent, it's very scary when your children don't feel well."

Two of her children are Dickson Public School students, and she's not alone.

The district averaged 225 absences everyday this week, giving them no choice but to send out this phone call Wednesday afternoon closing school for the remainder of the week.

Besides two strains of the flu, Superintendent Jeff Colclasure says an upper-respiratory-virus and a stomach bug are also going around. He hopes the closing will give sick students time to get well, and give time to deep clean the schools.

"We are spraying down every hard surface with a sanitizer, and of course we are cleaning up bathrooms and common areas," Colclasure said. "We cleaned up all the tables and chairs with disinfectant in the cafeteria, and we will be doing that with the desks and chairs in classrooms."

Colclasure says even some students who had a flu shot got sick, so he reminds everyone to wash their hands and stay home if you're sick.

"When you have so many children in such close contact with each other, the thought of that running through your student population is very concerning." Colclasure said.

But the closing is something Lacy is proud of.

"I think that it shows how much our school system cares about everyone in it." Lacy said.