The flu has hit and continues diminishing the numbers of students attending school right now...at least in the OKC area. As if missing because you don't feel good is not enough, I just heard reports that Bethany schools will not let anyone who was sick and gone from school the previous day (with any symptoms indicative of the flu) return without being cleared by a physician and with a note signed by that physician. They were not even allowed to go to their lockers and retrieve their books but lead in mass exodus from the building.
Wow...it can be really difficult to get into the doctor this time of year...so does that mean that students will just continue to have to miss school until they can get in? And what about the parents that can't afford a $100 office visit just to say that their child is negative. And while I don't have to face the cost when it comes to being forced to go to the doctor, I do have to take off work in order to sit with them all day waiting to get in.
Don't get me wrong...I don't want people infected with the flu virus walking around school spreading it to my healthy children either...I guess the enormity of the situation just hit me today and beyond that comes the worry that my kids can't miss school. If they did happen to have a sick day which is not typical for them, the possibility of them being forced to get a physician clearance could possibly cause them to miss one or more additional days waiting for an opening. With both the schedules being almost entirely made up of A/P classes, that would be devastating to them as far as being able to catch up while not being there for the teaching of those assignments missed.
I also feel real sad for the doctors around town...how are they going to accommodate this if all public schools in the area adopt this mentality? I know Caleb said there was a significant number of students out yesterday and Ashtyn had to attend "flu 101" sessions. And remembering entire schools shutting down at the end of last year does not bode well for the fact that we appear to already be approaching chaos and the flu season hasn't even truly begun. And while I am not one that worries about getting the flu...for the most part...it stinks but you get over it...at the same time, I also understand that when a serious flu epidemic hits, its not just about the fact that people get sick...it's about all the care givers, schools, workplaces, etc that become over-burdened and are in some cases completely closed down. I think when you hear talk about the Government being so worried about flu epidemics, it is not because they worry about us getting sick...it's that is can be crippling to society. I pray for the caregivers in this area that they are able to meet the needs of the public while keeping themselves well. And as I tell my children...wash, wash, wash your hands.