Two schools to close today due to illness

Two schools to close today due to illness
Posted on 11/20/2019

Grand Junction, CO - Due to increased absences today, Grand Mesa Middle School will close today, Nov. 20, 2019, at noon and Mt. Garfield Middle School will close today at 12:30 p.m. Buses will pick up bus-riding students at the new release time. Both schools will remain closed for the rest of the week, and all extra curricular activities at those two schools are also canceled. School will resume for both buildings after Thanksgiving Break on Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019.

Due to the primary symptoms reported, which include vomiting and diarrhea, Mesa County Public Health believes it is most likely norovirus that is going around the school. Please help us fight the spread of illness by reminding children and all family members to wash hands, not share personal care items, and to remain home from school and other public places for at least 24 hours after symptoms stop. Background Palisade High School closed mid-day Thursday, Nov. 14 and all day Friday, Nov. 15 due to 30% of students calling in sick or leaving school sick last Thursday. Mt. Garfield Middle School closed mid-day Monday and re-opened on Wednesday, Nov. 20, but will close early due to increased absenteeism. Rocky Mt. Elementary School is also closed today, Nov. 20, and charter school Juniper Ridge Community School is closed for the remainder of the week. Closure typically happens when student and/or staff absences are at, approaching, or above 20% due to illness. When schools are at or approaching 10% absenteeism due to illness, schools receive additional disinfecting above the regular amount of cleaning performed each day at schools. Custodial workers are using bleach in their work to help combat this suspected virus. Any student or staff member that is sick should remain home until at least 24 hours after the last episode of vomiting. In addition, all school attendance offices will mark a student as excused this week if a parent calls the school to say they are holding their student home due to concerns that they may become ill.

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