A D.C. public school is being cleaned after a teacher came down with viral meningitis, officials said Monday.
The school system and the D.C. Health Department said the teacher works at the Peabody Primary Campus of the Capitol Hill Cluster School.
The campus, which serves children ages 3 to 5, is remaining open during the cleaning process, school system spokeswoman Melissa Salmanowitz said Monday.
Viral meningitis is serious but rarely fatal, unlike the more severe bacterial form of the illness. Cases of viral meningitis were recently reported at the University of Maryland in College Park.
Meningitis affects tissue surrounding the brain and spinal cord. In a letter to parents of children at the school, the Health Department noted that viral and bacterial illnesses have symptoms in common — fever, severe headache, stiff neck and nausea. But the viral illness is not treated with antibiotics, and most patients recover on their own, the letter said.
The principal of the Peabody campus — which is associated with elementary and primary school campuses — said in a separate letter that three to six custodians had cleaned surfaces there throughout the day Monday and that a more intensive cleaning would be performed at night.
Health Department spokeswoman Kristen Randolph described the process as “deep-dive cleaning.”
“We don’t believe the kids are in any great danger of contracting the disease,” Randolph said.