WASHINGTON — The federal government is advising schools they don't need to close their doors this fall just because a few students come down with swine flu.
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Friday that only schools with high numbers of students getting the new flu should consider closing to stem the outbreak.
The decision rests with local school officials, but they are looking to the federal government for advice about the new flu strain that has caused a global epidemic.
As the virus spread to students last spring, more than 700 schools in half the states temporarily closed their doors. The new flu is expected to hit schools again this fall. But the Obama administration is hoping to minimize closings and disruptions they cause for families.