ETHETE - Officials with Fremont County School District 21 are telling students to stay home this week because of a flu outbreak.
The school board decided to close the district's three schools - an elementary, middle school and charter high school - until Monday after one quarter of the district's 440 students were absent Tuesday.
"We took precautions, but it just got bad," Assistant Superintendent Nina Garland said.
Students began staying home in large numbers last week, she said.
Almost half of the 50 students and three of five teachers at the district's Fort Washakie Charter High School were absent Wednesday.
Charter high school classes meet in one of three trailers, which makes avoiding a cough or sneeze nearly impossible, according to Fort Washakie Assistant Superintendent Gene Meier.
All three schools are next to each other on one campus.
Although the flu appears to be the main culprit, students have reported strep as well.
The hope is that students who have been out for a week will return Monday.
Garland says the school buildings are being thoroughly cleaned in the meantime.
The school calendar includes two additional days, usually used when school is canceled because of bad weather. More days might be added if the number of sick students stays high, officials said.