SUGAR LAND, Texas (FOX 26) - A stomach virus has been spreading out of control at Dulles Middle School in Sugar Land and more than 100 students were kept away from the campus. Fort Bend Independent School District is calling this outbreak at Dulles 'norovirus-like symptoms” but they point out that norovirus has not been confirmed.
You don't often see middle school children leaving campus in medical masks, but that was the case today at Dulles Middle. Parents who spoke with FOX 26 News say that the school nurse is giving masks to students with stomach virus symptoms as the children wait for their parents to arrive.
”They sent her home as a precaution because she exhibited some of the symptoms,” explains Rachel O’Reilly who picked up her daughter from Dulles Middle.
Fort Bend ISD confirms 'norovirus-like symptoms' which "spread easily from person to person" have been infecting students at Dulles Middle School for more than a week. On a normal day, the district says thirty children may miss classes at Dulles Middle. 183 children were absent on Thursday, Nov. 3. Eight days later, 121 children have been kept home.
“It doesn't really concern me," says Ladawn Fletcher. "I have three kids. They get germs. It comes with the territory. I feel like the school has been very responsive.”
The water fountains at Dulles Middle have been shut off and are being thoroughly cleaned. Students are being provided with bottled water and are asked to regularly wash their hands.
Fort Bend ISD is working with Fort Bend County Health and Human Services and the Texas Department of Health Services. Extra custodians are now extensively cleaning, vacuuming, removing garbage and fogging the building overnight with disinfectant.
”I haven't been sharing my food and when people ask do I want some food, I say no,” says 12-year-old Dulles Middle student Treylon Beloney.
“They're taking a lot of really great precautionary measures and I feel confident the school is doing everything they can to watch out for the best interest of the students,” adds O’Reilly.
The district says some children may have stayed home on Friday because of Veteran's Day. If your Dulles Middle School student has dealt with vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain or fever, school administrators are asking parents to keep their children at home for 48 hours after symptoms have stopped.