Oddly enough - Risking rabies is just plain batty

17th October 2008 at 01:00

Involving parents in lessons is back in fashion as part of the drive to improve home-school links. But let's hope none of the parents has access to dead bats.

Some 90 pupils at a school in Montana began a series of rabies injections last week after a parent brought in a diseased bat's corpse for "show and tell". The mother, who has two children at Stevensville Elementary, found the animal at home. She kept the bat in a jar in the fridge, then took it into five classes at the school, encouraging pupils to touch it, handing them disinfectant wipes afterwards.

In fact, such incidents are not that uncommon. A TES contact in public health informs us that young people in several parts of the United States have needed rabies injections for another bizarre, school-related reason.

The cases have all involved children who have learnt about mouth-to-mouth resuscitation at school. The students then decided to practise it - on the first dying raccoon or skunk they found.

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