From the Nurse


Tips for Parents from the School Health Office



   Many parents ask, “When is my child sick enough to stay home from school?”

This is not always an easy question to answer!  We hope that these tips can help!

A child who is sick will not be able to perform well in school and is likely to spread the illness to other children and staff.  We suggest making a plan for childcare ahead of time so you will not be caught without a comforting place for your child to stay if he/she is ill.

 The following are a few such situations that warrant watching and possibly conferring with your health care provider and, therefore, it is recommended that you should not send your child to school if he/she has:

  • Persistent fever greater than 100.4 °F orally in the past 24 hours (including a fever that requires control with medication, like Tylenol)
  • Vomiting in the past 24 hours
  • Diarrhea in the past 24 hours
  • Chills
  • Sore throat that is severe, accompanied by fever and/or feeling ill, that persists longer than 48 hours, OR after known exposure to a confirmed case of Streptococcal throat infection
  • Strep Throat (must have been taking an antibiotic for at least 24 hours before returning to school)
  • Bad cold, with a very runny nose or bad cough, especially if it has kept the child awake at night
  • Red, runny eyes that distract  the child from learning
  • Large amount of discolored nasal discharge, especially if accompanied by facial pain or headache
  • Severe ear pain or drainage from the ear
  • Severe headache, especially if accompanied by fever
  • Honey-crusted sores around the nose or mouth that might be impetigo
  • Head lice – until your child has been treated according to the nurse or doctor’s instructions
  • Any condition that you think may be serious or contagious to others

 Please remember whenever you keep your child home from school to call the school nurse in advance of the start of the school day to report your child’s absence. These guidelines are meant to serve the best interests of all the children in our program.  If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to call us.   

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