By Nancy Gutierrez

The state is providing a remedy for schools with decreased average daily attendance (ADA) due to the flu. In November and December cases of influenza were diagnosed in epidemic proportions across the nation.

This season brought a new strain that hit children and the elderly hard. Absences in schools increased dramatically.

Superintendent of Schools Jack O'Connell urged school districts that have experienced a significant decrease in student attendance to work with their county health officials to determine if the region has experienced an epidemic. Education Code section 46392 (a) provides a process by which schools may apply for financial relief if their ADA has been affected by an epidemic.

The code states that "whenever the average daily attendance of any school district, county office of education or regional occupation center has been materially decreased, because of fire, flood impassable roads, an epidemic, an earthquake, or law enforcement agency determined safety hazards," schools can apply for ADA financial relief.

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