Administrators and teachers in Randolph County Schools are hopeful that taking a four-day weekend gave the flu a chance to run its course.

When students were dismissed on Wednesday of last week, an automated phone call went out to all parents that school would be closed for the next two days because of widespread cases of the flu. Extracurricular activities were cancelled as well.

According to Superintendent John Jacobs, Wedowee Elementary School was most affected with 40 percent of the students absent, plus seven teachers. Absences because of the flu were most prevalent in elementary grades and most prevalent in the Wedowee district, including Rock Mills Junior High School.

Curriculum coordinator Jennifer Braden said teachers and staff spent the four-day weekend cleaning and disinfecting everything - classrooms, computers, buses, you name it. The automated call to parents had encouraged them to wash students' backpacks, lunchboxes and jackets.

She said it looks like the four-day break was worth it because absences at the elementary level are back to about 10 percent or less now.

"We hope it will help to decrease the spread," she said.

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