SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – What health officials are deeming a “tripledemic” seems to be having an impact on school attendance.

While this time of year is typically when cases of illnesses increase, there have been slightly more absences this year among students and staff in several school districts, compared to years past. One such school district is Springfield Public Schools, where cases of not only COVID, but RSV and the flu have been contributing to decreased attendance.

Azell Cavaan of Springfield Public Schools told 22News how the district is working to reduce cases of illness at school, “So what we’ve been trying to do is remind families, even before we left for Thanksgiving break to continue to wash your hands, we still encourage the use of masks, they’re not mandatory in our schools but they are readily available for anyone who would like a mask.”

Azell pointed out that the average attendance rate among the 60 schools in the district is around 90% right now. It was only slightly higher this time in 2019 when there was a 92% attendance record.

The school district is hopeful that following the holiday season, illnesses will decrease and attendance records will go back up.