Flu hits Waldoboro schools
Waldoboro — Medomak Valley High School in Waldoboro has seen a rise in the number of students out with the flu from Jan. 7 to Jan. 10.
Sources in the community say the number of students out with the flu was around 200 by Jan. 10. It had been reported at around 140 absences by Jan. 8.
Regional School Unit 40 Superintendent Susan Pratt said Jan. 8 the district schools "do seem to be hit by illness."
Pratt said the schools are in daily contact with the Maine Center for Disease Control, as is required in circumstances where more than 15 percent of students are absent.
MVHS has just below 570 students total in its population.
Principal Harold Wilson sent the following email to parents in the district Jan. 9: "Due to the recent illnesses, I have decided to waive all excused student absences for this week pertaining to the commendable attendance policy (If students misses four days or less they do not have to take final exams).The absences will not be counted toward the four days. If students are ill with the flu, they should stay home and you should notify the school if they are out at 832-5389. If they are healthy they need to be in school. We will be passing out a note from our nurse and an informational sheet from the Maine CDC to our students this afternoon. Please take time to review the information. This information can also be found on our school website."
It is not the only local institution hit.
Waldoboro Police Chief Bill Labombarde said Jan. 10 that every officer in his department except himself and one other person came down with the illness at some point recently. He attributed his avoiding illness to getting a flu shot this year.
He said more than 30 percent of the school's students were out by Jan. 9 based on information from the school's resource police officer.
News Editor Daniel Dunkle can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on twitter at @DanDunkle.