School, health officials release statements addressing Isle of H - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

School, health officials release statements addressing Isle of Hope student death

CHATHAM CO., GA (WTOC) -

Parents of students at Isle of Hope School may be getting a phone call Wednesday night, after one student died in the hospital.

School officials say they wanted to get the information they know out before rumors started spreading.

They do not think any other children are at risk of anything, they are making this call as a precautionary measure.

The Savannah-Chatham County Public School System sent the following statement to parents or guardians Wednesday night:

“Dear Isle of Hope Parent or Guardian:

It is with a heavy heart that we must inform you of the tragic passing of one of our younger students earlier this week. Our heartfelt condolences go out to the family of that student.  While we do not have official confirmation as to the conditions that led to the child’s untimely passing, we have been advised by the Chatham County Health Department to take certain health precautions.

Chatham County Health Department officials indicate there is no reason to believe that the general population of our school students, teachers, and staff is at increased risk for any contagious disease that could possibly be associated to the student who passed away. 

However, in an abundance of precaution, health department officials are recommending that those at the school who have been identified as having close, prolonged contact with the student receive preventive medication. Those people have been identified, are being contacted by the health department, and represent a very small segment of our school population. 

Thank you for your understanding and, again, please join us in keeping the family in our thoughts. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact our school by calling 395-6555.”

Dr. Diane Weems, District Health Director for the Coastal Health District, also released the following statement regarding the precautions recommended for those who were in close, prolonged contact with the Isle of Hope student:

"My sincere condolences go out to the family and to those at the school who were close to this child. After careful consideration, and as a purely cautionary measure, I recommended that those who recently had very close, extensive contact with the child take medication in order to reduce the chances of those people potentially getting ill. That includes immediate family members and 15 people associated with Isle of Hope School who have been contacted. I want to emphasize that there is no reason to suspect that any others at the school are at an increased risk of illness and that the recommendation for those who were in close contact with the student is, as a letter from the school stated, out of an abundance of precaution."  

Another letter is being sent home with Isle of Hope students on Thursday:

Dear Parent or Guardian:

For those of you who may not have had the opportunity to listen to our phone message yesterday evening, we are reaching out to you by way of this letter.  Our Fiddler-Family is holding a heavy heart as we have learned about the tragic passing of one of our younger students earlier this week. Our heartfelt condolences are with the family of this student.

Because our school did not have a full understanding as to the conditions that led to the child’s untimely passing, precautionary measures and health safety protocols were put in place after consulting with the Chatham County Health Department.  While we do not know the cause of death associated with this incident, Chatham County Health Department officials indicate there is no reason to believe that the general population of our school – students, teachers, staff – is at increased risk for any contagious disease that could possibly be associated with the student who passed away.  Please find included a statement from the Chatham County Health Department.

In an abundance of precaution, health department officials have recommended that those at the school who have been identified as having close, prolonged contact with the student receive preventive medication. Those people have been identified, are being contacted by the health department, and represent a very small segment of our school population.

Thank you for your understanding and, again, please join us in keeping the family in our thoughts.  If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact our school by calling _________.

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