School Sickness

Classes were cancelled Friday at Northside Methodist Academy because of excessive illnesses. The academy's childcare was also closed Friday.

And, a similar virus is also affecting schools in Coosa and Baldwin Counties. Health officials said the high absentee rate is blamed on a flu-like virus.

All public schools in Coosa County are closed until Monday because of mass illness.

Baldwin County School officials said about 11 percent of the student population were absent this week. The system normally has a 96 to 97 percent attendance rate.

Health officials said two viruses have surfaced in the past few weeks. One illness causes an upset stomach, nausea and diarrhea. And a second virus is similar to influenza, causing a high fever and body aches.