Flu outbreak closes St. Cloud school

6:45 AM, Dec 20, 2012   |    comments
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ST. CLOUD, Minn. - An outbreak of influenza has convinced administrators at a school in St. Cloud to close until the start of the new year.

Officials at St. Katharine Drexel made the decision to cancel classes Thursday and Friday due to the large number of sick students at the school.

Principal Erin Hatlestad sent a letter to parents Tuesday making them aware of the possibility of cancelling school, writing "we started the day with 41 absent, a number that grew quickly by the end of the day to 52 - with 3 new confirmed cases of influenza in the students sent home this afternoon."

On Wednesday Hatlestad confirmed classes would indeed be suspended Thursday and Friday. She also said many of the sick students had Influenza A.

"This is unprecedented," Hatlestad said in the letter Tuesday. "No one remembers this many students absent with similar symptoms. I cannot stress enough to please keep your children home if they show any symptoms of being sick."

The students begin their winter break Monday, and will remain out of school through the first of the year. They are expected to return to school on Jan. 2.

(Copyright 2012 by KARE. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. )

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