Nearly 100 students sick at Holton Public Schools; district closed Friday

Posted at 7:09 PM, Mar 10, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-11 18:11:44-05

HOLTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. -- Holton Public Schools are closing their doors Friday due to a contagious illness that spread in the schools.

Superintendent Jason Kennedy told FOX 17 News that it all started at the beginning of Thursday's school day, when officials noticed that only 88% of students were in attendance. That number steadily dropped throughout the day, as students were going home after complaining of feeling ill. By the end of the day, attendance had dropped to 80%, affecting nearly 100 students.

Kennedy said the students were experiencing stomach pains, high fevers, and vomiting. The elementary school was affected the most by the illness.

Public Health of Muskegon County was called to investigate. The school district will be closed Friday so cleaning crews can disinfect the buildings.

The specific illness has yet to be determined. Superintendent Kennedy advised that parents of sick students see their doctors, recommending that students return to school after being fever-free for 24 hours without medication so that the virus can be contained.

A letter to parents from the district's Facebook page addressed the spreading illness:

The play "The Little Mermaid" will still be performed as scheduled Friday evening at the high school's cafeteria.