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Tenn. governor approves school waiver for swine flu
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Students at a Knox County middle school that was closed for a week when a classmate came down with swine flu won't have to delay their summer vacations.
Gov. Phil Bredesen on Thursday signed an amendment to the state's 180-day school attendance law giving the education commissioner power to make an exception "in the event of a natural disaster or serious outbreaks of illness affecting or endangering students or staff."
Some 1,100 students were kept home from West Valley Middle School in early May when a classmate contracted probable swine flu. The child recovered, but students now risked having to spend three extra days in school.
The St. Louis Public Schools said Thursday that officials became aware of that district's first confirmed case of swine flu the day before.
The city Health Department said there's no need to close schools there.