Health investigators are trying to figure out why swine flu has spread erratically after an outbreak closed three more New York City schools.
The decision on May 14 to shutter the schools follows an outbreak that left an assistant principal in critical condition and sent hundreds of students home with flu symptoms. A Catholic high school in the city closed last month after a flu outbreak.
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said four students and the assistant principal have documented cases of swine flu at a Queens middle school. More than 50 students went home sick with flu-like symptoms, he said. At another middle school in Queens, 241 students were absent May 14. Dozens more were sick at an elementary school.
The assistant principal may have had pre-existing health problems, the mayor said. The three schools, with more than 4,000 students altogether, will be closed for at least a week, he said.
A version of this article appeared in the May 20, 2009 edition of Education Week