Attendance down, classes canceled across Tri-State schools due to flu and RSV

One district hasn’t been able to hold classes all week.
Published: Nov. 4, 2022 at 5:46 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - Illness is impacting schools throughout the Tri-State, keeping kids and teachers home and forcing some districts to cancel classes.

District officials say the flu and RSV are to blame.

Lynchburg-Clay Local Schools and Williamstown Independent Schools called off classes for their students Friday.

At Lynchburg-Clay, 90 students and several staff members called in sick Monday and Tuesday.

Lynchburg-Clay Elementary School was closed Thursday and Friday. The district’s middle and high schools shifted to remote learning those days.

MORE | Mother urging parents to act quickly if their children are showing signs of RSV

Meanwhile, in Kentucky, the Williamstown School District hasn’t had classes for the past week.

“We’ve been monitoring our attendance data for the last couple of weeks, and since last Monday, we’ve hovered between 87 and 90 percent attendance,” said Todd Dupin, director of pupil personnel and operations.

Dupin says those numbers are low for the district, which usually has 90-94 percent attendance.

“Our student attendance was down, and then we started having staff drop off, and we were starting to have trouble covering classrooms with the substitute shortage,” he explained.

MORE | Surge in respiratory virus jams up Cincinnati Children’s ERs, urgent cares

Elizabeth Schlaudecker, MD, director of infectious diseases at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, says flu and RSV are impacting schools across the nation.

“We started to see some of the summer respiratory viruses back in September, and then respiratory syncytial virus or RSV started to pick up in October.”

Schlaudecker says RSV and other respiratory viruses are typically most common within the first two years of a child’s life.

“Many of these kids were protected from RSV for those first couple of years because of the COVID pandemic, because they were staying at home, or wearing masks, or not going around other kids.”

Cincinnati Children’s recommends that parents get their children the flu vaccine and to keep them home if they’re experiencing any symptoms of a cold.

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