Superbug Shuts Down Entire School District

23 schools disinfected after single case of drug-resistant staph
By Jane Yager,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 28, 2007 6:31 AM CDT
Jose Trevino, right, and Sean Brice, left, wipe down surfaces in a classroom at Walter Payton College Prep High School on Friday, Oct. 19, 2007, in Chicago. Schools in Staph infections, including the...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – A single confirmed infection of antibiotic-resistant staph has convinced officials to shut down all 23 schools of an eastern Kentucky district so cleaners can scour classrooms, cafeterias, locker rooms, buses and playgrounds. The district superintendent called the massive disinfection a "preventive measure" to ward off a large-scale outbreak of the dangerous bacteria among the district's 10,000 students, CNN reports.

The bacteria has been blamed for the recent deaths of a Virginia high school student and a New York City middle school student. It's believed to sicken some 90,000 Americans a year. High school students in the Kentucky district recently staged a cafeteria sit-in to demand their building be cleaned to protect it against the bacteria.