Several charter schools in Nampa cancel class after illness outbreak

Several charter schools in Nampa cancel class after illness outbreak. (CBS2 Staff Photo)

Three Nampa area charter schools have cancelled class for the rest of the week due to illness.

School officials with Liberty, Victory and the Legacy Charter say there's been excessive absences due to the flu and strep throat. Classes will be cancelled on Thursday and Friday and will resume on Monday.

Students were sent home with letters, along with an email to parents before noon Wednesday, saying school will be canceled for the rest of the week. Allowing sick students to get better and to prevent exposing others to illness.

"We determined that this was something that was getting worse instead of better."

Gayle O'Donahue, community relations director for all three districts, says their attendance is usually really good. So, this weeks numbers have been alarming.

For example, Victory Charter School started this morning with about 25 students calling in sick. By the end of the school day, 50 students had gone home sick. That's out of about 400 students, grades K-12 .

"It's just unheard of for us," O'Donahue said.

O'Donahue says the three districts share things like busing.

"This great way of sharing things in the situation created a way of maybe sharing illnesses that affected all three schools," O'Donahue said.

Being public charter schools, they build in extra time into the school calendar so in situations like a closure students won't fall behind.

Unfortunately, that's not the case for 12th graders who graduate a week early. They'll have to make up hours over spring break.

Hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes sit in each classroom. CBS2 is told students and teachers wipe down doors and desks daily. In this case, it just wasn't enough.

"Having the two days to be closed along with the weekend really helps with the students who are feeling ill or already ill to get well and then to keep the rest of the students who are well from being exposed," O'Donahue said.

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