Keeping kids healthy at school - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Keeping kids healthy at school

October 19, 2005

Valdosta - Kindergartners work side by side in a small classroom each day, and if one gets sick, it usually spreads like wildfire.

That's why its so important for kids with a contagious illness to stay at home. But how do you know when your child is really too sick to go to school? "A fever, maybe chills, headache, that's a good indicator to keep your child at home," said Geneine Godfrey, Epidemiologist.

That's also when they're the most contagious. And the younger the child, the more likely they are to spread those germs. "In kindergarten they'll take their headset and chew on the cord, their pencils are in their mouth, just lots of sharing things," said Eppes.

With 21 students in this class, one sick child can easily turn it into a bacterial breeding ground. Mrs. Eppes teaches them precautionary measures to help them stay healthy. "Instead of sneezing or coughing into their hand, we have them cough right here into their arm and that way they're not getting the germs back on their hands," said Eppes.

They also wash their hands anytime they sneeze or cough, and Mrs. Eppes has a special trick to make sure they get rid off all those dirty germs. "We sing the A,B,C's to make sure we wash them really good," said Eppes.

"If you don't do it, it will get germs on people when you touch them," said Ryan Best, Kindergartner.

It's impossible to keep kids at home every time they get a runny nose or a simple cough. "That's common, I do that as an adult and I still come in," said Eppes.

But teaching them to use a little extra caution and keep their germs to themselves will help everyone stay healthy.

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