GROTON, MASS. (WHDH) - Students at a Groton elementary school, Florence Roche, were dismissed at 12:15 p.m. due to a stomach virus that has infected over 200 students at the school.

According to Groton Superintendent Laura Chesson, the decision was made due to “the rapid spread of the virus and the age of the students.”

She said that this advisory only affects this one school. Students all have upper GI symptoms, she said, which largely manifested as vomiting.

Thursday night, about 30 students called out, and were not feeling well. By the next morning, the number of sick calls had jumped dramatically.

About 200 students were out sick with norovirus symptoms of a total of over 500 students, and no teachers were sick. The health department came in and tested food and water supply in case that was the culprit, but Chesson said there was no indication that that was the issue.

“At that point in my conversations with the Board of Health, they were saying viral (infections),” she said.

Groton parent Carrie Zmijewski said she picked her daughters up from the middle school after hearing the news.

“I got a call from the nurse that they were having severe stomach pains and that was it,” she said. “I didn’t want to take any chances… None of us want our kids to get sick, and when it’s something that spreads so fast, it’s kind of alarming.”

Chesson said the school plans to do a deep clean of the schools in the district, and students should be back in the classroom Monday.

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