Parents have been told that Granville Academy in Woodville will be closed for the rest of the week after an outbreak of the sickness bug norovirus.
Yesterday, Tuesday, October 17, the secondary school said that a large number of students were sent home suffering with sickness and diarrhoea. Staff at the school have encouraged pupils to wash their hands and as well asking parents not to send them to school if they are showing symptoms of a bug.
Now, the school, in Burton Road which as 702 pupils, has confirmed it will be closed for tomorrow, Thursday, October 219, and Friday, October 20, due to the outbreak.
In a letter sent home to parents, the school said: "We will be closed on Thursday October 19, and Friday, October 20, due to an outbreak of the norovirus in the academy. This virus is very contagious and easily spread. We appreciate that half term is fast approaching and so, in the interest of the health of our students, we feel it in their best interests to be isolated from this virus where possible.
"In order to halt the spread of the virus, the Academy will undergo a deep and thorough clean as advised by Public Health England. Whilst we realise that this may cause some inconvenience, the rate of infection between students has been rapid, increasing by over 300 per cent today.
"If you are unable to supervise your child, special arrangements can be made in the Academy upon request. Please contact reception ideally by 5pm tonight or 7.30am tomorrow morning if you would like this, please can you make sure that they are sent with food for the day as the canteen will be closed both at break and lunch.
"Your child has already been given a separate letter about the norovirus earlier today. Please read it and follow the advice in order to further stop the spread.
"Once again, we apologise for any inconvenience this may cause but feel that we have no choice but to put the health of our students and local community first."
Last week, Woodville junior and infants school was closed after 50 children and staff came down with a sickness and diarrhoea bug.
The school was closed while a deep clean was carried out to ensure that the bug would not spread further and reopened on Monday.
What do do if you get the bug
If you experience sudden diarrhoea and vomiting, the best thing to do is stay at home until you're feeling better. There's not always a specific treatment, so you have to let the illness run its course.
You don't usually need to get medical advice, unless your symptoms don't improve or there's a risk of a more serious problem (see When to get medical advice).
To help ease your symptoms:
Drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration. You need to drink more than usual to replace the fluids lost from vomiting and diarrhoea. Water is best, but you could also try fruit juice and soup.
Take paracetamol for any fever or aches and pains.
Get plenty of rest.
If you feel like eating, try small amounts of plain foods, such as soup, rice, pasta and bread.
Use special rehydration drinks made from sachets bought from pharmacies if you have signs of dehydration, such as a dry mouth or dark urine – read about treating dehydration.
Take anti-vomiting medication (such as metoclopramide) and/or antidiarrhoeal medication (such as loperamide) if you need to – some types are available from pharmacies, but check the leaflet that comes with the medicine. You can also ask your pharmacist or GP for advice about whether they're suitable.
Gastroenteritis can spread very easily, so you should wash your hands regularly while you're ill and stay off work or school until at least 48 hours after your symptoms have cleared, to reduce the risk of passing it on.