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Parents will decide whether kids get H1N1 vaccine PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 07 October 2009 09:59

Administration sending out permission slips with info on vaccine for parents to say yes or no


With the H1N1 vaccine just wrapping up human trials, it is already making its way to USD No. 480. Very soon, parents will have the option to have their children vaccinated against the flu. However, a permission slip that has been sent to parents throughout the district must be signed and returned in order to obtain a vaccine. The permission slip will be accompanied by an information packet gathered by the Seward County Health Department that the district urges parents to read extensively.

“This is for students to get the shots for H1N1 when we get our allotment for the shots,” Superintendent Vernon Welch said. “It has two sides to it. It is also in English and in Spanish. It will be going out to the parents. We also have an information part of it in English and Spanish.

“We sent out 4,481 – to all the parents in the district so they can say yes or no to whether their child receives the shot,” he explained. “That letter has been pre-stamped and will go back to the county health department. They will present it to us once they have that information on the availability of whether the parents want their child to have that shot or not.

“As of right now, I don’t foresee in the future in the next week or so that we will get any allotment for the school district,” he continued.

“I understand there is about 100 coming in for county health and they are that which is prioritized. Until we get our allotment, we have no idea how we are going to administer the shot because we don’t know what time of the month it is going to come, but we will be ready.”

According to Director of Auxiliary Services Alan Haskell, the erection of the four additional classrooms at Liberal High School is coming right along – ahead of schedule.

“They poured the top floor which will be the bottom floor in the future if their is ever a second story on that,” Haskell said. “They basically got it weathered in, but there will still be a temporary roof that goes on top of that. They are ready to start bringing in the interior walls and exterior walls, the framers should be on site (Monday), but as of (Monday) afternoon, they hadn’t arrived yet. The floor is scheduled to be poured on the 13th of this month so they feel like they are seven to 10 days ahead of where they are on their schedule.”

A collaboration between USD 480 and the Kansas Children’s Service League Early Headstart is offering a program to assist teenage mothers with services and for 12 teen mothers, quality childcare will even be provided.

“They wrote an extension grant to provide similar services that they have been providing in Finney County,” Director of Federal Programs Laura Cano said. “What they are mainly targeting is our teen parents.

All of the services that this agency will provide are after school so it wouldn’t take any time out of school. They are very comprehensive about addressing the issues that come with being a teen parent. Of course, they will be targeting expectant mothers and teenage mothers with children 0 to 3 years old. The areas of education they will be helping them with is education, nutrition, how to take care of their babies, what emotions they are going through, how to stay in school, how to be successful staying in school and they would also work with the families because teenage parents are often times living with their parents. They would help them cope with that.

“Perhaps the neatest thing, we have services in Seward County for ages 0 to 3, but the enhancement will be that there is a child care option,” Cano explained. “So for 12 teens in Seward County or Liberal, they would have the option of receiving quality day care.

What that means is that our teenage girls would be able to stay in school while their child is receiving quality childcare outside of the school. In order for them to keep the childcare provided free for them, they must stay in school. It’s a win, win. It makes them accountable, it makes them stay in school and learn that they really need to wait to have a second child until they graduate from school.

Childcare Coordinator with the Kansas Children’s Service League Sharlene Giamalva, also a 1989 LHS graduate, was on hand from Finney County to answer any questions regarding the program. She felt that the program has been a positive thing for Finney County and could offer similar results for Seward County. However, she said, USD 480 could tailor the program to fit the needs of Seward County.

The board of education did ultimately approve the implementation of the program, however, felt it important to set a standard grade point average that each teen mother participating in the program must maintain in order to continue their involvement in the program. In the near future, the board will meet in order to work out details that will make the program more appropriate for Seward County.


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The High Plains Daily Leader and Southwest Daily Times are published Sunday through Friday and reaches homes throughout the Liberal, Kansas retail trade zone. The Leader & Times is the official newspaper of Seward County, USD No. 480, USD No. 483 and the cities of Liberal and Kismet.  The Leader & Times is a member of the Liberal Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas Press Association and the Associated Press.

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