Central Linn schools closed due to 'illness outbreak'

According to district staff, students have been diagnosed with Influenza A and B.

Posted: Dec 18, 2019 12:00 PM
Updated: Dec 18, 2019 5:48 PM

HALSEY Ore. -- School days at all Central Linn School District schools were canceled ahead of the holiday break due to an "illness outbreak," according to officials.

According to district staff, students have been diagnosed with Influenza A and B.

Class at Central Linn Elementary was canceled Tuesday, and administrators extended the closure to Wednesday and Thursday at Central Linn Junior-Senior High School as well. Winter break begins Friday, and school will resume on Jan. 6.

Education assistant Kallina Lathrom said she watched the illness spread throughout the schools starting last week.

"There were a lot of kids sick, and we didn't know how many until after the weekend. Then they were just dropping an dropping, and kids kept going home during the day. So it was pretty scary," she said.

Officials said the decision was made when over 20% of the student body was sick, in line with guidelines from the Oregon Department of Health. 

Administrators asked parents to keep their students home until they were free from symptoms like fever, nausea, vomiting and sore throat for 24 hours.

Brandy Hester's daughter works with the Central Linn High School's cheer team and wound up getting sick.

"Yesterday, her body just started hurting really bad, and she said, 'I think I'm really sick.' So we took her down to the walk-in clinic to have her tested for the flu, and she tested positive."

According to staff, the schools will be sanitized in the coming days.

Central Linn is the fourth school district in Linn and Benton Counties impacted by widespread illness this month.

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