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Dozens Of Students Sickened With Stomach Flu At SJ School

SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) -- A San Jose elementary school was keeping children indoors all day Friday to stop the spread of stomach flu.

In a matter of weeks, 90 students and six employees at Horace Mann Elementary School have caught the virus.

It began April 29, when a student started vomiting in a classroom. Since then, more and more students have gotten sick.

The health department has ordered a complete wipe down of the facilities to stop the outbreak.

"They closed off the drinking fountain, they've closed off the bathroom, they've cleaned everything... even the posts at the school," said parent Bethany Lewis.

Despite the sunny forecast and warm temperatures Friday, the school was on a rainy day schedule where all the kids are indoors all day, including lunch and recess.

The district calls it "social distancing," where they limit the contact between students to try and stop the spread of germs.

On Friday, they got another six cases reported, pushing the total to 96.

They are also using hand sanitizers to try and stop the spread.

After school on Friday, crews will come in for a third day in a row of deep-cleaning the entire campus. The school will then be locked down with no weekend events allowed.

Additionally, six nurses are on campus helping out and reminding kids to wash their hands.

Horace Mann parent Rick Carlson wasn't optimistic about changing the kids' behavior.

"We stress washing their hands, but they don't listen," Carlson said with a laugh.

Since the outbreak began on April 29, the school has been averaging about 6 to 7 new cases a day. School nurses said it is not slowing down as much as they would like.

As part of the stepped up efforts, the school production of the Aladdin musical has been postponed.

Some potentially disappointing news about that musical; if they cannot get the number of new cases down to zero by the end of the school year, they may have to cancel the musical altogether. The last day of school is June 2.

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