The state health department and a Middle Georgia school district say it was safe for faculty and students to return to school after several Hurricane Irma evacuees suffered from diarrhea and vomiting.
The Georgia Department of Public Health and Laurens County school district issued a statement Friday addressing parents’ worries after several people were struck by a gastrointestinal virus while staying in a shelter at East Laurens Middle School gym.
Laurens County schools reopened Friday to students and faculty.
“Due to concerns expressed by parents through telephone calls and social media, we wanted to send out a joint letter from the Laurens County Board of Education and the Department of Health to inform parents of all steps that have been taken to address this situation,” the letter stated, which was posted on the school district’s Facebook page and website.
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The only people with the virus were staying at the middle school, but as a precaution the East Laurens middle and high schools were professionally cleaned after the virus spread. The virus was not food related because it would have affected people at both the schools’ shelters, the letter said.
“We believe that one or more of the evacuees, possibly a family, brought the virus with them and because of those close confines and fragile health conditions of many of the evacuees, it spread to some others at the shelter,” the statement said.