Educators and staff can help slow the spread of colds and flu. On this page, you will find more information on preventing the flu, as well as, materials and tools for schools. The following information applies to 2011-2012 Influenza and Seasonal flu viruses.
- Approximately 1/5 of the U.S. population attends or works in schools. (U.S. Dept of Ed, 1999).
- Some viruses and bacteria can live from 20 minutes up to 2 hours or more on surfaces like cafeteria tables, doorknobs, and desks. (Ansari, 1988; Scott and Bloomfield, 1989)
- Nearly 22 million school days are lost annually due to the common cold alone. (CDC, 1996)
- Addressing the spread of germs in schools is essential to the health of our youth, our schools, and our nation.
- Students need to get plenty of sleep and physical activity, drink water, and eat good food to help them stay healthy in the winter and all year.
- Preventing the Spread of Influenza (the Flu) in Child Care Settings: Guidance for Administrators, Care Providers, and Other Staff
Flu recommendations for schools and child care providers.
- Questions and Answers: Information for Schools
Printable version of answers to questions commonly asked by school administrators, teachers, staff, and parents.
- Children and the Flu Vaccine
CDC recommends that everyone 6 months of age and older get a seasonal flu vaccine.
- Protecting Against the Flu: Advice for Caregivers of Children Less Than 6 Months Old
Research has shown that children less than 5 years of age are at high risk of serious flu-related complications.
- Stopping Germs at Home, Work and School
- Snort. Sniffle. Sneeze. Antibiotics are not always the answer!
Explains why antibiotics don't work for a cold or the flu.
- Ounce of Prevention
Tips and streaming video for parents and children about the steps and benefits of effective hand washing.
School Materials and Posters
Germ Stopper Materials
"Be a Germ Stopper" posters and screensavers. Simple reminders for good hygiene for use in classrooms, cafeterias or laminated for bathrooms.
See the Stop the Spread of Germs site at www.cdc.gov/germstopper.
Cover Your Cough Materials
See the Cover Your Cough page on this site for poster and flyer formatted for use in schools.
"It's a SNAP" Toolkit
Program materials to help prevent school absenteeism.
Activities for school administrators, teachers, students and others can do to help stop the spread of germs in schools. See the handcleaning section of the "It's a SNAP" site atwww.itsasnap.org/snap/about.asp.
Kids can learn about health and hygiene and become members of the Scrub Club(tm) at www.scrubclub.org. The site features a fun and educational animated Webisode with seven "soaper-heros" who battle nasty villains who represent germs and bacteria. Kids learn the six key steps to proper handwashing through a webisode, handwashing song, interactive games, activities for kids and educational materials for teachers are also available to download.