10 Apr 2014

Pink eye closes public schools in American Samoa for rest of week

12:57 pm on 10 April 2014

All public schools on American Samoa's main island, Tutuila, have been closed for the rest of the week as a result of the pink eye epidemic.

Public schools were scheduled to reopen today after being closed since Monday because nearly 2,300 students and some 130 teachers were affected by pink eye.

However, the director of the Education Department, Vaitinasa Dr. Salu Hunkin-Finau, says a fresh assessment has found that about a third of teachers and staff are still absent.

She says it was decided to keep the schools closed.

"So parents please help us take care of your children, keep them home so that they will be well enough to attend school on Monday. And we ask the teachers that are affected by the pink eye to also take care of this condition and be ready to work on Monday."

The director of the Education Department, Vaitinasa Dr. Salu Hunkin-Finau.

There are no reported cases of pink eye on the Manu'a island group, and public schools there remain open.

The health department says the pink eye epidemic appears to have reached its peak.