Cherokee County Schools have received letters this week warning that their child may have been exposed to cough.
Tuesday's letters were sent to families whose children attend Free Home Elementary School and Creekland Middle School in Canton. One student at each of the schools has been diagnosed with whooping cough. The two students are siblings, a school district spokeswoman said.
Whooping cough, or pertussis, is a highly contagious disease spread through the air when ill person or cough, according to the letter from the North Georgia Health District.
The health district is advising parents to speak to a doctor. 14.
“We take the safety of our students, employees and all of their families very seriously. We work with the Georgia Department of Public Health to ensure accurate information is provided to parents as quickly as possible where serious illnesses are diagnosed at their child's school, "said Cherokee school district spokeswoman Barbara Jacoby in a written statement.
Whooping cough starts with "mild, cold-like symptoms including cough and runny nose," with the cough wording over one to two weeks, according to the health district.
Coughing bouts may be followed by vomiting. Fever is not generally a symptom. The cough is often worse at night.
“If your child develops a cough illness, with or without whoop, vomiting, or shortness of breath he / she needs to be seen and evaluated by a health care provider immediately,” the health district letter states. "Early treatment can help your child get faster and lower the chances of spreading the disease to others." The district also recommended parents make sure their child is up to date on pertussis vaccinations.
Children diagnosed with whooping cough must remain out of school until finishing their antibiotic treatment.
The health district said it is continuing to investigate the situation.