Harrison Moon
High school Latin teacher Jane Batarseh left school at 9 a.m. sharp on Thursday, Feb. 15, and was home sick for the rest of the week. As of Feb. 17, Batarseh was still showing symptoms, such as fever, chills and general fatigue.

On Wednesday, Feb. 14, 25 high school students out of 134 were absent, according to assistant to the head of high school Valerie Velo.

On Thursday, Feb. 15, the number moved up to 34 students.

On Friday, Feb. 16, 40 were absent, according to a count by the Octagon.

On Friday, absences included the following: 15 of 29 seniors, 10 of 35 juniors, 5 of 32 sophomores and 10 of 38 freshmen.

In other words, 30 percent of the high-school was missing on the day before mid-winter break

Most absences were due to illness, although some students had other reasons – for example, starting the mid-winter break early or, in the case of some Chinese students, returning home to celebrate Chinese New Year.

Multiple classes were canceled due to either students or teachers being sick.

All of math and microeconomics teacher Chris Millsback’s and Latin teacher Jane Batarseh’s classes were canceled on Feb. 15-16 because both were sick.

On Feb. 16, physics teacher Glenn Mangold canceled both AP Physics classes, even though AP Physics 1 had a test scheduled. In that class, four of 14 students were present. In AP Physics C, there were three of nine students.

In addition, band director Bob Ratcliff canceled high school jazz band during zero period on Feb. 16.

And the second session of the seniors’ sex ed class, scheduled for Feb. 16, was postponed to Wednesday, March 21.

On Feb. 13, head of high school Brooke Wells emailed parents to inform them that many students were out sick and ask them to keep their children at home if there were signs of illness.

—By Sarina Rye

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