Swine Flu Fears Close Six More Schools

Another local school closed Thursday

With dozens more students reporting flu-like symptoms, six more schools announced they'll be closed Friday.

There are actually three buildings that house two schools each. They are:

+ P.S. 83 (The Luis Munoz Rivera School, with 436 students) in East Harlem, which is collocated with P.S. 182 (The Bilingual Bicultural School, 424 students). Twenty-five students there have reported experiencing flu-like symptoms in recent days.

+ P.S. 503 (The Discovery School, 818 students) in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, which is collocated with P.S. 506 (The School of Journalism and Technology, 762 students). Thirty-seven students have fallen ill the last two days.

+ P.S. 155 (The William Paca School, 413 students) in East Harlem, which includes P169 (80 students). The schools report that there are 14 cases of influenza-like illness among students this week.

Language Barrier Adds to Swine Flu Mayhem

Some neighborhoods are citing a language barrier to explain why announcements of school closures and other swine-flu-related alerts are not reaching all members of the community.
In Washington Heights, Councilman Miguel Martinez said when officials at PS 128 -- the Audobon School -- decided to close this week, it was a busy night on the phones.

"(Tuesday) night, teachers and staff were calling parents from 6 and 7 o'clock until 10 o'clock at night to let them know school was closed," Martinez said.

There are no confirmed cases of swine flu at the school, but scores of students were absent with the flu. Martinez said part of the problem is that swine flu notifications are getting lost in translation.

"All the postings that went up around the school building and the information given to parents were in English," Martinez said.

So far, four people have died with swine flu in New York. Health officials couldn't go into details about what the victims had in common, only that each had a pre-existing health issue.

To see a complete list of school closures and re-openings, click here.

Contact Us