3 schools closed today due to dengue

GDOE Superintendent Jon Fernandez acknowledged that he and his staff were anticipating some hiccups. (PNC file photo)

Classes are canceled today at Ordot Chalan Pago Elementary School (OCPES), Agueda Johnston Middle School (AIJMS), and Harvest Christian Academy.

The decision was made after one case of locally-acquired dengue virus was identified at AIJMS on Sept. 11, and at both OCPES and Harvest Christian Academy on Sept. 21.

Laurent Duenas, acting director of the Department of Public Health and Social Services (DPHSS), said they are working closely with the schools to ensure that every precautionary measure is taken to ensure the health and safety of students and staff.

“We are confident that providing further time for DPHSS and the Guam Environmental Protection Agency to further assess these schools will strengthen safeguards for all students, faculty and staff,” Duenas said in a release.

Over the next 24 hours, the DPHSS Environmental Team will continue to conduct mosquito
surveillance at AIJMS and OCPES to assess the presence of mosquitoes at the schools.
Additionally, the team will be gathering mosquito traps to test for the presence of the dengue virus. The team will also be assessing the effectiveness of spraying that took place last week.

Meanwhile, insecticide application will also begin at Harvest Christian Academy today, Monday. Information will also be disseminated to all students and parents.

“We urge our students and families to educate themselves on the dengue virus and the
importance of mosquito control efforts,” GDOE Superintendent Jon Fernandez said.

GDOE will be hosting an informational briefing for all interested parents and employees,
including interested parents and employees from Harvest Christian Academy, on Monday,
Sept. 23, 6 p.m. at the GDOE headquarters in Tiyan, Building B, first-floor conference room.

For more information, visit https://ghs.guam.gov/, or contact the Joint Information Center
Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at (671) 478-0208/09/10. If there is an emergency, dial 911.