Government asks universities to bend school rules for swine flu - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

8/20/09

Government asks universities to bend school rules for swine flu

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LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - The Federal Government issued advice to colleges and universities on how to deal with the swine flu if outbreaks surface on campus this fall.

There are special concerns for students living on campus because they're in such close quarters in a dorm.  So, guess what the government says every parent should send with their student when they pack for the dorm, a thermometer. The idea is if the student feels sick, the student  should check for a fever. If they have a fever, they should avoid crowds, particularly dining halls. If possible, it's recommended the student go back to mom and dad's house to recover, if they have flu-like symptoms. 

That's not a good assignment when it comes to grades, but the government is asking universities to be flexible under the circumstances.  "If a student is missing class, or misses a midterm exam, or final exam - again, they're doing the right thing when they're sick by NOT coming to class. We don't want them penalized," said Arne Duncan, Secretary of Education.

If the virus is worse than expected, the government says universities may need to provide dorm space to isolate sick students for a week.  They're even asking schools to bend the rules a little and forget about a note from the doctor because depending on how this virus hits, doctors may be overwhelmed. 

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