ARENAC COUNTY — The cold and flu season is taking its toll, as Standish-Sterling Community Schools cancelled school Monday due to seasonal illness and the Arenac Eastern School District cancelled school for Tuesday through Friday due to the number of
“The State requires us to maintain 75-percent attendance or we cannot count the day as a day of instruction,” said S-S Superintendent Michael Dodge. “We had 22-percent of our students out will seasonal illnesses and I decided to let our students have an extra day of rest to rest and recuperate. The decision for us was made late on Friday afternoon.”
“Last Friday, we found that we had an student absentee rate of 18-percent. We thought that maybe the weekend would offer some time for rest and recovery and, perhaps our attendance would improve on Monday. It got worse,” said Arenac Eastern Interim Superintendent Patrick Bootz. “We had over 80 students absent with more going home each hour. Most were because of flu-like symptoms.”
Bootz said ultimately, when school was called off for the week on Monday, it was for prevention and recovery.
He added that he has been through this in the past.
“I had to do this once before while I was the superintendent of Mio AuSable Schools. I believe it was in the year 2004,” he said.
“I don't believe we have had such a closure in recent history,” Dodge added.
Only AuGres-Sims carried on all week with business as usual.
"I actually just let parents know that despite other local school districts closing due to illness, our students are quite healthy," said AGS Superintendent Anne Doriean in an e-mail sent to the Independent Monday. "In fact, the number of students we have ill today (Oct. 26) is just slightly higher than we have on any other school day."