The Wake County school system is providing more details on how it will screen students for the Ebola virus, including steps to potentially isolate some children who may have been exposed to the deadly illness.
The N&O reported last month how North Carolina’s largest school system planned to ask students who’ve had extended absences or who are newly registering about whether they had been to Africa in the past 21 days. In a blog post last week, the school district provided specifics about the screening protocol:
• If a child is either returning from an extended absence or is registering as a new student, the student and/or his or her parents are asked, “In the past 21 days, have you traveled to West Africa or been in contact with someone who has?”
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• If the answer is no, the student may return to school or register to attend.
• If the answer is yes, an administrator and the school nurse are immediately notified. The student will be moved to an area away from other students and staff. The school nurse will assess the student. School nurses will provide information regarding speculated cases, possible exposure or unsubstantiated information of any kind to Wake County Human Services Communicable Disease team.
The process of responding to Ebola concerns tripped up at least one Triangle school.
On Friday, Superior Court Judge Orlando Hudson ordered that a Durham teenager be allowed to return to Mount Zion Christian Academy. The Durham private school tried to keep the student home for 21 days because his father had been in Nigeria – a nation that the World Health Organization has said for weeks has been free of Ebola.