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Grady must encourage sick students and staff to stay home during flu season

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These last few weeks have been a little weird. So many people in the Grady community have missed school that Principal Dr. Betsy Bockman felt the need to make an announcement asking students to be nice to all the subs. This is probably one of the few times Bockman isn’t worrying about students skipping.

The Grady population has been severely affected with so many students and faculty being unable to go to school. However, this flu season is not just affecting Grady. It is hitting hard across the country and it is important to give some respect to this virus. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention states on its website that, “If you get sick with flu symptoms, in most cases, you should stay home and avoid contact with other people except to get medical care.”

With painful symptoms that can sideline its victims for weeks, it is important that students and staff stay home to rest to prevent a worsening of symptoms. This would also help in containing the sickness here at Grady.

Teachers and students might feel pressured to work through their sickness to not get behind and miss class time. With a busy second semester teachers are worrying about entering grades and preparing students for important end of year tests. Students are nervous about the same thing; no one wants to get left a unit or two. This is certainly reasonable way to think, but, because this school is already overcrowded there is all the more reason to encourage everyone to miss school if they are feeling unwell.

While in the some cases the flu is usually not so serious, over 60 people in Georgia have died from it according to the Georgia Department of Health, including one student from Cross Keys high school, only a short drive away from Grady. When there is a risk such as this, even a small one, the proper precautions need to to be implemented and even a little more caution on top of that.

There also should be more encouragement for teachers and students to get the flu vaccine. Even without a strict enforcement, a light encouragement might do some good for those who forgot or did not know that was an option.

Grady is a strong community and we care about the well-being of all its people. Even if a sick day might seem excessive, administrators should remind us that a day off is never too bad of an idea. This type of caution is necessary early in the process, too. Before so many get sick in school, the first unfortunate few must be sent home so the rest of the school can continue healthy. The existing stigma of weakness for being sick and taking a day off should be replaced with a compassionate hand of letting those who need a sick day or two, have a break.

Even as students and staff sometimes do not take the school administration as seriously as we should, they still have an important role in telling us how we should act responsibly. They should take full advantage of that and let us know that sometimes, grades need to take a backseat to our own health and our peers health up front.

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About the Writer
Caleb Weinstock, News Assistant Managing Editor
Weinstock is the Assistant Managing Editor for the news section of the Southerner. He has experience of being a sports editor and a news online editor.
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Grady must encourage sick students and staff to stay home during flu season