As schools continue to shut down in New York and elsewhere because of swine flu, health officials are asking a question for which there is little guidance, even in pandemic plans, reports the New York Times: What is the best way to stop an epidemic that spreads mostly in schools rather than in nursing homes? Many school officials have shut their doors and had custodians disinfect the empty buildings. But that leaves parents confused and frustrated. Those whose schools remain open might fear that their children are in danger, and those with healthy children whose schools close might feel that officials have overreacted, burdening them with day-care costs and denying their young ones an education. Even guidance from the top is ambivalent. On May 4, the acting director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. Richard E. Besser, said "closing schools is not effective" at halting the spread. Previously, the centers had advised schools to close for up to two weeks if a confirmed case was found. On May 18, New York City closed four more Queens schools after outbreaks of flu symptoms, bringing the total to 16 ordered shut since last week. In Texas, hundreds have been closed at various times. "The lack of definitive information is causing great stress on families," said Eric Gioia, a City Council member from Queens who wants parents to be given the results of flu tests at their local schools and daily attendance figures…

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