LANSING, Mich. - Flu has taken its toll on the Michigan Educational Assessment Program, as nearly 200 schools across the state closed due to sickness for at least part of the annual test week, the Detroit Free Press reported.

MEAP testing, including all make-ups, was scheduled to end as of Oct. 29, but the Michigan Department of Education will give schools permission to test through Nov. 4 if they submit a request, department spokeswoman Jan Ellis told the Free Press.

At New Bedford Academy in Lambertville, a public charter school, about a third of all students were absent due to illness on Oct. 19, as well as a third of the teaching staff, a board member told the Free Press. None of the students tested positive for H1N1, but there have been cases of unspecified influenza, according to the Free Press.

The Hastings School District closed when it reached 25 percent absenteeism at Hastings High School, Superintendent Richard Satterlee told the Free Press.

SOURCE:
Detroit Free Press, "Sickness extends MEAP testing," Oct. 23, 2009

FURTHER READING:
Michigan Education Report, "Into and beyond the MEAP," Nov. 25, 2008

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