Wash your hands
So many kids at Plumb Elementary School in Clearwater have called in sick this week that the Pinellas County school district decided to send out a news release today just to say there's really nothing wrong. Since Monday, about 15 percent of the student body has been absent, compared to the usual district average rate of 3 to 10 percent. Some children don't feel well - mostly upper respiratory stuff - but others are staying away to avoid catching whatever is floating through the school, health services supervisor Rita Becchetti said. "It's not a public health concern," she said, adding that the school will remain open.
Still, the Health Department is monitoring the situation. And the school district is reminding parents how to wash hands: "20 seconds in warm soapy water before and after preparing food, after using the bathroom, changing diapers and after sneezing or coughing."