Contagious virus infects 100 elementary school children in Flanders
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Contagious virus infects 100 elementary school children in Flanders

The contagious virus spread throughout De Ark Oekene elementary school on Tuesday and Wednesday. Credit: De Ark Oekene Facebook page.

A contagious virus caused around 100 children from an elementary school in Flanders to be ill on Wednesday.

Six students of the De Ark Oekene elementary school, near Roeselare in West Flanders, fell ill on Tuesday afternoon. Later that day, several other students also fell ill.

While the school initially thought the illness was being caused by food poisoning, it soon became clear that the contagious virus, norovirus, which causes stomach flu, was the cause.

Around 100 children were infected by Wednesday morning, prompting management of the school to communicate the situation to parents in a letter.

The teachers disinfected the school on Wednesday afternoon, cleaning benches, door handles and hand railings, amongst other things.

Around 40 children were absent from the school on Thursday morning due to the virus.

The norovirus causes stomach and intestinal discomfort. Although it is very contagious, it does not cause lasting damage and symptoms typically disappear not long after the initial infection.

Evie McCullough
The Brussels Times

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