LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Our latest flu numbers show the epidemic is hitting Arkansas hard, and schools are feeling the impact.
The Anthony School called off a Thursday night basketball game because a majority of the athletes were out sick.
"The best thing you can do is stay home when you're sick,” said Mary Shannon Metrailer, the school’s nurse.
Metrailer has found herself turning the CDC daily reporting new flu cases coming out of the district.
"I've seen the higher numbers in our middle school, 6th, 7th and 8th grades,” she said.
Metrailer urges sick students and staff to stay home if you have a fever of 100 degrees or great.
“We highly encourage our students to stay home for 24 hours, fever free, without the use of fever-reducing medications,” Metrailer said.
Although less than 5 percent of the student population at The Anthony School is impacted by the virus, students and staff are working to stop it from spreading.
"We actually have a staff member before and after lunch stands outside of the bathrooms and encourages them to wash their hands, make sure they are washing long enough with soap and drying it so they are doing it accurately,” said Metrailer.
The school has made “Kill Germs” stations available in hallways with a squirt of GermX easily accessible. Thursday, Jan. 30, students cleaned their work spaces with disinfectant wipes, and teacher continue to reinforce the basics.
"We encourage students to cover their coughs and sneezes,” said Metrailer. “They can sneeze into their elbow, if they use a Kleenex make sure they throw that away and again washing hands in between those events.”
The Anthony School did not release the number of confirmed flu cases, but staff there have been in close contact with surrounding schools, which have also seen an uptick in flu cases.
Doctors stress to parents to get yourself and your children vaccinated and to wash your hands any chance you get.