Harvard reopens following swine flu closure

May 5, 2009 7:04:35 AM PDT
Another HISD school has gotten the all-clear, as health officials start to re-think their decision to close schools for up to two weeks. Harvard Elementary in the Heights reopens today. [SWINE FLU: Symptoms, questions and answers and more]
[SCHOOL CLOSINGS: Map of closings related to swine flu]
[INTERACTIVE: Interactive guides to spread of swine flu]
[CHAT TRANSCRIPT: Questions answered by local expert]
[TRAVEL ALERT: What the CDC wants you to know ]

This morning, students from Harvard Elementary returned to classes after an unexpected vacation that started late last week. Hamilton Middle School reopened on Monday.

Local health experts say they stand by their decisions and believe the closures have helped keep the number of swine flu cases down locally.

However, all of this comes at a bad time, given that we're near at the end of the school year.

"It's got to be impacted badly. I just dread to see this year's TAKS scores because a lot of the kids are sick anyway, not necessarily with flu, but it's been a bad allergy season. I'm hearing there is a lot of absenteeism," said Gayle Fallon with the Houston Federation of Teachers. "A child who doesn't feel well, who is taking the test, whether they have the flu or a serious allergy infection, isn't going to do as well as a healthy child."

Parents with students in HISD can keep up to date with school closings due to the flu outbreak by calling the district's information hotline at 713-556-6005. It's open weekdays from 7am until 7pm.

Meanwhile, students at Episcopal High School will return tomorrow. Today, faculty and staff at Episcopal are returning.

SEE A MAP AND LIST OF SCHOOL CLOSINGS

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