With the new school year coming up shortly, a few parents have asked about our school’s policy on Swine Flu. We have been working with the DES and HSE since July regarding guidelines. Like every other school in the country, we have been advised to follow the guidance given by the HSE and the Department of Education. Essentially, unless we’re told otherwise, schools will operate as normal. However, we will be taking care to ensure your children’s safety so please read the text below as our policy on how we can ensure that the virus does not spread to our school. Full guidelines are given by the HSE on the following link: http://www.hpsc.ie/hpsc/A-Z/EmergencyPlanning/AvianPandemicInfluenza/SwineInfluenza/EducationalandChildcaresettings/File,3900,en.pdf
Guidelines from the HSE:
- If you or your family have cold-like symptons or one member of your family has swine flu, do not send your child into the school. Please telephone the Swine Flu telephone line on: 1800 94 11 00 before doing anything.
- If a child is in school and is displaying symptoms of a cold or flu, they will be brought into an isolated room while their parents are contacted. Parents should ring the hotline number above. The child should not return to school until at least 7 days after the flu-like symptoms pass.
- Unless the school has a cluster of pupils with Flu like symptoms, it should remain open.
- At this time, there is no requirement for schools to invest in masks or any
specialised cleaning products or detergents. However, schools must ensure that adequate facilities for hand washing are available and routine cleaning of
facilities takes place
- Students should cover their mouth and nose with a paper tissue when coughing
or sneezing. If no tissue is available they should cough or sneeze into the
inside of their elbow. Students should use a tissue only once and dispose of it
quickly and carefully (a dustbin is fine). This is respiratory etiquette. Waste,
including used tissues, may be disposed of in the normal way. There is no
need to take special precautions in the handling of such waste.
- Wash hard surfaces such as kitchen worktops, door handles, etc with a normal
household cleaner as the virus can live on these surfaces.
- Schools will put up posters around the school to ensure good practice is upheld by its pupils
Further to this:
- All furniture and worltops will be washed with disinfectant at the end of each school day
- All classes will be taught about swine flu thanks to lesson plans created for the primary school in the first week of school.
- If the school needs to close or if there is an outbreak of flu like symptoms, you will be contacted by text. Make sure you give the school your correct phone numbers.
We hope that this helps and look forward to seeing you on Monday at 8:50am. For further information see:
- http://www.swineflu.ie (for up to date Swine Flu information)
- http://www.ippn.ie (for resources and lesson plans)