Local schools are trying to prevent flu virus from spreading


WINSTON/OKTIBBEHA COUNTIES, Miss. (WCBI)- If you haven’t had the flu yet this season, you probably know someone that has.

Schools are canceling events and hiring cleaning crews to battle the dangerous virus.

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Homes and schools are where many spend most of their time.

That’s why taking a few minutes to do some extra cleaning could keep everyone in your house fever-free.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported high flu activity in Mississippi and Alabama this season.

Kids have been hospitalized and many fear the numbers will only grow.

There are steps in place to prevent that from happening at school and at home.

Although germs can’t be seen with the human eye they live on everything you touch.

“All you have to do is cough and it can be spread to the next person the student is sitting by. It can spread like wildfire, ” said nurse practitioner Jessica Mills.

It’s something she sees every day at Fair Elementary School in Louisville.

Mills said, recently, about 15 to 20 kids have been visiting her office every day.

“We like to keep them home. Flu strands, A and B, are the most prevalent,” said Mills.

As the virus infects more students, Mills encouraged teachers to clean their classrooms even more.

“We tell all the teachers that if they have had a student who has been diagnosed with positive flu to be sure they’re wiping down all the tables, the desks, having the kids wash their hands when they cough their mouths. We try to tell the teachers as well as the students to at least disinfect with Lysol Spray, Clorox, and Germ-X,” said Mills.

Those germs also follow the kids home.

Dede Carter owns Tidy Girls Cleaning Service in Starkville.

Her job takes her to schools, businesses, and homes.

“With children, we will focus on things they can touch, things they can put in their mouths. Toys, we will wipe down all their toys, we’ll make sure the doorknobs are clean, toilet bowl handles are clean, and that the floors are clean,” said Carter.

Carter said it takes extra work to get rid of germs in home after several people been sick in the small space.

“We find ourselves doing extra mopping and using heavy-duty chemicals. A lot of customers have asked for extra work this year due to flu and virus season,” said Carter.

Educators have asked parents to keep students home if they have flu symptoms and until they are fever-free for at least 24 hours.