Around the area, March 20

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VANCOUVER

Family tells school its kids have chicken pox

Cases of chicken pox have surfaced among several students at Vancouver’s Chinook Elementary School.

A family with students in several grades has reported its children have chicken pox, a highly contagious infection caused by a virus.

It usually begins with a mild fever and an itchy rash. The rash starts as small red bumps that become blisters and then crust over. Chicken pox is contagious from one to two days before the rash appears until all of the blisters are dry and crusted. After exposure, it takes 10 days to three weeks before the rash appears.

Chicken pox is generally not a serious disease, according to a letter distributed Friday to parents of Chinook students.

It is usually treated with fluids, rest, anti-itching medicines and medicine for fever control. Aspirin products should not be used for fever control. There is a possible connection between the use of aspirin and Reye’s Syndrome, a rare but serious disease, said the letter.

A child with a suspicious rash should not go to school. Ask a health care provider for treatment instructions. A child can return to school after all the blisters crust over and dry up.

VANCOUVER

WSUV center releases county equity report

A Washington State University Vancouver research and advocacy center has released its 2010 Clark County Equity Report.

The report is from the campus Center for Social and Environmental Justice. Clay Mosher, associate professor of sociology and a research affiliate of the center, has collected data that measure facets of equity for education, the economy, health and criminal justice. It illustrates differences among racial, ethnic and income groups.

Topics include: home ownership, income and poverty levels by race/ethnicity; dropout rates and educational attainment by race/ethnicity; variations in WASL standards for local school districts; juvenile sentencing rates by race/ethnicity and gender; and variations in adverse childhood experiences by family income.

The report complements other recent efforts to measure the overall well-being of Clark County, such as the 2009 Community Report Card from the Vancouver-based, nonprofit Community Choices.

The report is at http://www.vancouver.wsu.edu/programs/csejustice/home.html.

Future reports will serve to track changes and raise awareness among community organizations of progress being made to reduce inequities.

The Center for Social and Environmental Justice will sponsor its fourth regional conference March 27 at WSU Vancouver, partnering with local universities and more than 50 community organizations.