PEI

Cases of scabies at Charlottetown elementary school

Sherwood Elementary School in Charlottetown is dealing with a couple of cases of scabies — a contagious and itchy condition caused by a mite burrowing itself into the skin.

'We don't think it's being passed around here'

Scabies is highly contagious, and outbreaks in schools and health care facilities are not uncommon. (Laura Meader/CBC)

Sherwood Elementary School in Charlottetown is dealing with a couple of cases of scabies — a contagious and itchy condition caused by a mite burrowing itself into the skin.

The first case came to the school's attention Friday. 

"The parents let us know, they discovered it themselves and treated the student," says the school's principal Jean Boudreau. That student has now returned to school.

Boudreau sent an email to parents with students at the school to let them know about the case and ask them to be diligent in checking for scabies.

"And this morning we had another case that was reported to us," Boudreau said Tuesday. That student is being treated and kept at home for 24 hours or so, he said.

"We don't want it to become an issue at the school," Boudreau said, adding "We don't think it's being passed around here." 

Carpet removal, extra cleaning

The school is taking measures to prevent the spread of scabies. Soft surfaces such as soft chairs and carpets are being removed in two classrooms which had students with cases, and will be replaced when the school is sure there are no more cases. 

'We're going to do our best to make sure it doesn't spread,' says principal Jean Boudreau. (Laura Meader/CBC)

There is also extra cleaning happening several times daily in those classrooms and in washrooms.

"This is just us being overly cautious," he said. "We're going to do our best to make sure it doesn't spread."

Boudreau has been a school principal for more than 20 years and said this is his first time dealing with scabies. 

Scabies mites live in human skin. They spread from person to person through direct contact or from clothing and bedding. The mites create a rash which is treated with a cream and clears in about 24 hours.

More P.E.I. news

With files from Laura Meader

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversationCreate account

Already have an account?

now