In just the last three weeks, the number of confirmed cases of swine flu has jumped by more than 200 in Mississippi. The state Department of Health reported 839 confirmed cases.
The number of probable cases is much higher, and local schools are beginning to be hit hard.
An abnormally high number of students at Southeast Lauderdale school campuses have been absent late this week.
"We had about twenty-three or twenty-four out yesterday, and they're asking us to document those with flu-like symptoms. The only ones we could for-sure document was about 4," said Dwane Taylor, Southeast High School principal.
"The last couple of days, the numbers have increased," said elementary principal Ryan Powell. "And today we have sixty-two absent and also about ten extra have checked out of school because of flu-like symptoms and/or fever."
They are not testing for swine flu since the Department of Health says most flu cases are likely swine flu.
This flu is treated the same way as regular seasonal flu. Administrators ask parents to keep children out of school if they have a fever.
"Right now, there is a lot of diagnosed flu coming back from the doctors' offices," said school nurse Kim Rivers. "And we just want to keep the number that are actually exposed to it down."
Students are being reminded constantly to wash their hands. Some teachers are even encouraging them to scrub the desks with disinfectant. Officials are also trying to limit everyone's exposure to anyone who is running a fever or is showing flu-like symptoms.