More than a quarter of students at one Cowichan elementary school home sick

Alex Aitken Elementary School reports more than one-quarter of students sick

Almost 70 students at the Cowichan Valley’s Alex Aitken Elementary School, more than a quarter of the school’s student enrolment of 240, were home sick on Feb. 13.

While the number of sick kids at the school might seem high, authorities are advising that it’s just the result of the usual maladies at this time of year and not in any way related to the coronavirus, which has seen thousands afflicted in an outbreak that has spread around the globe.


The school sent a letter to parents and caregivers asking that they keep their children at home if they are not well, and recommends tips on how to avoid getting sick.

The letter acknowledges that the school is currently experiencing higher than average illness rates among students, and that the school sent the letter in the hope of allowing parents to be more informed of what was going on, to give them tools to help keep everyone healthy, and discuss what they’re doing in-school to help.

“While there is no link into any specific illness, we are in the height of cold and flu season and those effects are being felt here,” the letter said.

“The best way to help combat these illnesses is to increase the good hygiene practices we advocate for in school. They include staying at home and rest, wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, cover your mouth with your elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze, and regularly clean and disinfect touched surfaces.”


The letter said that, as a school community, authorities at Alex Aitken Elementary School are taking extra steps in the building to slow and stop any transfer of illness from surfaces.

“Please help us curb the spread of this illness and do your part to help,” the letter concluded.

Mike Russell, communications director with the Cowichan Valley school district, said the other 28 schools in the district are currently reporting an average amount of sick students for this time of the year.

“There’s nothing out of the ordinary as far as I know,” he said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Brentwood jr. girls playing at B.C. hoops championship

Brentwood College School’s junior girls basketball team is making history this week.… Continue reading

Lake Cowichan, Duncan to host Masters Curling Championship

Begining next Tuesday and running until March 8

North Cowichan to seek suggestions from First Nation in renaming street

Section of Humbird Street in Chemainus was to be renamed MacMillan Street

Cowichan’s Mikrogiannakis a finalist for BCHL MVP and top defenceman

Cowichan Valley Capitals defenceman Dimitri Mikrogiannakis is a B.C. Hockey League all-star,… Continue reading

Cowichan Tribes to get $750,000 for erosion projects on Cowichan River

Funding comes from the province’s Community Emergency Preparedness Fund

VIDEO: Reconciliation is dead: Wet’suwet’en supporters vow to keep protesting at B.C. legislature

Supporters say they will continue ongoing action to hold government accountable

VIDEO: Province promotes ‘lifting each other up’ on 13th annual Pink Shirt Day

Students, MLAs, community members gathered at B.C. Parliament Buildings Wednesday

Prepare for new coronavirus like an emergency, health minister advises

About 81,000 people around the world have now become ill with COVID-19

B.C. residents in Wet’suwet’en territory have right to police presence: Public Safety Minister

Nevertheless, Bill Blair said officials remain ‘very anxious’ for the barricades to come down

Winnipeg police investigating graffiti on RCMP and other buildings

Manitoba Justice Minister Cliff Cullen denounced the vandalism

Nanaimo woman to compete in new season of ‘Big Brother Canada’

Carol Rosher, a cancer survivor, is one of 16 houseguests appearing on reality TV show

B.C. seniors’ watchdog calls for better oversight after recent problems at Retirement Concepts care homes

‘There is no financial incentive right now to be a good operator’ - Isobel Mackenzie

Blockade reroutes traffic on Pat Bay Highway

About 80 people from four major Peninsula First Nations blocking major highway

Trucking company fined $175K for Kootenay creek fuel spill

Decision handed down last Friday in Nelson court

Most Read