Saturday, October 3rd, 2009
By Shelley Grieshop
I.C. School closed due to student illnesses
  Immaculate Conception School in Celina closed its doors at 10:45 a.m. Friday because half of its student population was absent with flu-like symptoms, according to school Superintendent Kathy Mescher.
Mescher initially canceled only kindergarten classes on Friday after half of the 21 students were absent on Thursday. Most of those children reportedly were experiencing flu symptoms including vomiting, she said.
"We talked to the health department and they agreed it was best to send everyone home," she said. "We have no regrets doing that."
Mescher said the action was necessary to allow ill students to recover during the weekend and prevent the spread of whatever virus is plaguing the school.
The Catholic school educates about 225 students ages preschool to sixth grade. Mescher said she believes this is the first time the entire school has closed for an illness outbreak.
At Mescher's request, local health officials came to the school on Friday to provide support and guidance. As a precaution, they also examined food and preparation methods and found no problems, Mescher said.
None of the students' illnesses were diagnosed as H1N1 - a type of flu that has become widespread across Ohio and the globe. Health departments and physicians all over the U.S. have been instructed by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention to only test patients who are hospitalized with flu symptoms or when mass outbreaks are reported.
It wasn't determined on Friday whether any of the ill students will be tested for the H1N1 virus, which overall produces only minor cases of the flu.
As of Friday, no other school system in the Grand Lake area had reported high absenteeism, according to health department officials in Mercer and Auglaize counties.
Additional online stories for this date
Print edition only stories for this date
• Trust fund will pay for 2 new restrooms
• New seat law effective soon
• Celina man indicted for stalking estranged wife
• Flyers lose third straight game
• Redskins get beat for the first time
• Bulldogs roughed up by the Indians
• Mauk lights up Bath for seven touchdowns
• Tigers pass their way past Wildcats
• Rohr has big night for Cardinals
a_d
Independence Day
80°
Mostly Sunny
1%
Saturday Night
60°
Mostly Clear
3%
Sunday
83°
Mostly Sunny
11%
Sunday Night
64°
Mostly Clear
11%
Monday
84°
Slight Chance Thunderstorms
19%
Monday Night
68°
Slight Chance Thunderstorms
19%
Tuesday
78°
Thunderstorms Likely
59%
Tuesday Night
63°
Chance Thunderstorms
53%
Wednesday
77°
Chance Thunderstorms
25%
Wednesday Night
63°
Chance Thunderstorms
25%
Thursday
77°
Slight Chance Thunderstorms
38%
Thursday Night
65°
Chance Thunderstorms
40%
3 Day
Extended
a_da_d
camera_logo Photo Albums
video_logoOnline Video
Thursday, June 18
index pict
Persistent rain caused flooding