Flu Safety

Tom Kitayama Elementary School

1959 Sunsprite Drive, Union City, CA  94587-1995   (510)475-3982

Dear Parent/Guardian:

As school resumes, I am writing to address concerns that parents/guardians may have about the spread of flu, especially in the wake of the attention that the H1N1 virus has received. Kitayama Elementary School and the New Haven Unified School District will continue to follow recommendations from the federal Centers for Disease Control, through the California Department of Public Health and the Alameda County Health Department, regarding flu conditions and the best steps to take concerning schools.

We want to keep the school open to students and functioning in a normal manner during this flu season. But, we need your help to do this. Here are a few things you can do:

  • Tell your children to wash their hands frequently with soap and water, both at home and during the school day. Consider purchasing a small container of hand sanitizer for your child to use at school, and/or donating a container to your child’s classroom.
  • Remind your children to cover their nose and mouth, preferably with a tissue, when they cough or sneeze, and to dispose of the tissue in a waste basket or trash can.  Make sure they know to use the elbow, arm or sleeve instead of the hand when a tissue is unavailable.
  • Urge your children not to share personal items, such as food, drink or unwashed utensils.
  • Know the signs and symptoms of the flu. Symptoms of the flu include fever (100 degrees Fahrenheit, 37.8 degrees Celsius or greater), cough, sore throat, a runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, and feeling very tired. Some people may also vomit or have diarrhea.
  • If a child is exhibiting flu like symptoms, or is otherwise ill, please do not send him/her to school, nor should sick children be sent to daycare.  Any children who are determined to be sick while at school will be sent home.
  • Keep sick children at home for at least 24 hours after they no longer have fever or do not have signs of fever, without using fever-reducing drugs.  Keeping children with a fever at home will reduce the number of people who may get infected.

If the flu becomes more severe, we may take additional steps to prevent the spread such as:

  • Conducting active fever and flu symptom screening of students and staff as they arrive at school,
  • Making changes to increase the space between people, such as moving desks farther apart, postponing class trips, etc.
  • Dismissing students from school for at least 7 days if they become sick.

For more information, visit www.flu.gov. You may also call 1-800-CDC-INFO for the most current information about the flu. We will notify you of any additional changes to our school’s strategy to prevent the spread of flu.


Lisa M. Metzinger