Perry Co., Mo. School Dist. 32 taking precautions after student diagnosed with meningitis

Meningitis case in Perryville school

PERRY COUNTY, Mo. (KFVS) - A southeast Missouri school district is taking precautions after a student was diagnosed and is being treated for meningitis.

According to District 32, they were notified on Friday morning that a student at Perryville Elementary is being treated for meningitis.

As of Friday evening, the Perry County Health Department has not confirmed the diagnosis and is waiting on test results to see if the it’s a case of bacterial meningitis or viral meningitis.

School leaders sent an email to all parents in District 32 with information about the signs and symptoms of meningitis and how to prevent the disease from spreading.

Sarah Cox teaches at the Middle School and has two daughters who are students.

She also got a phone call because her youngest shares a classroom with the diagnosed child, and Cox is glad their parents took the initiative and told the school about the sickness.

“I hope the student gets better. Thanks for reporting everything. As a parent you don’t technically have to involved with all of that so at least they notified school," Cox said. "I’m making sure my kids are washing their hands we don’t obviously want to get sick with anything, we definitely don’t want it to be life threatening.”

Jeanie White is the Assistant Superintendent of District 32, and said they are following the same disease control protocols for fighting flu season.

White is encouraging parents to be vigilant with their kids.

“So if their child were to get sick, or if they were to come up with symptoms that maybe they didn’t brush it off. Maybe they take them to a physician, maybe they get a second opinion," White said. "We’re also educating our children. Don’t share food. Don’t eat off of somebody else’s fork. Make sure that your cover your mouth before you cough. Make sure you’re not drinking after somebody because all of these things spread germs.”

As an extra precaution, White said staff will be disinfecting surfaces in all school buildings in Perry county over the weekend.

District 32 said they learned of the diagnosis while grandparents were in the building for fifth grade Grandparents Day, but grandparents were never in the shared classroom.

Symptoms of viral and bacterial meningitis can include some or all of these symptoms:

  • Sudden onset fever
  • Chills
  • Headache
  • Vomiting
  • Stiff neck
  • Tiredness
  • Sometimes a rash

You can click here for more information from the Centers for Disease Control.

The Perry County Health Department expects to know more about the meningitis case on Monday October 28.

If parents have any more questions, the school district asked they contact nurse Tish Bell at 573-547-7500, ext. 275; your health care provider or your child’s building administrator.

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