Hanna said his district will continue to use its mass-notification system to keep parents updated on swine flu-related news.

John A. Challenger, chief executive of global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray, and Christmas Inc., told the Fort Wayne, Ind., journalgazette.net that companies might be able to control the potential damage to their business from a pandemic by changing how they operate. These changes could include implementing company-wide telecommuting, increased video conferencing, social distancing, and strict personal hygiene policies.

Increased use of telecommuting and video conferencing could extend to schools as well, letting students log onto computers and attend virtual classes if schools are closed and helping administrators stay in touch with school personnel.

Obama said the federal government is “prepared to do whatever is necessary to control the impact of this virus.” He noted his request for $1.5 billion in emergency funding to ensure adequate supplies of vaccines.

And he advised individuals to take their own precautions: washing hands, staying home if they are sick, and keeping sick kids home.

The Centers for Disease Control has recommended that schools strongly consider dismissing students when there is a confirmed or suspected case.

On April 28, health officials closed a school in Sacramento, Calif., and a school in New York City.

Said Gibbs, “The test results coming back on the [first U.S. fatality from swine flu] are a very, very painful reminder of what we have to do to remain safe.”

Links:

Centers for Disease Prevention and Control

Rossville Consolidated School District

SchoolReach

eSN’s full coverage of swine flu and its repercussions for schools

SAFE Center Resources: Pandemics

Note to readers:

Don’t forget to visit the Mass Notification Systems resource center. Terrorism. Severe weather. Violent crimes. Water main breaks. Gas leaks. All of these scenarios can occur instantly. The question is, will your schools be prepared to communicate urgent news before it’s too late? Go to: Mass Notification Systems


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