When to Keep Your Child Home...

As parents, we know that it is always difficult to decide when a child should stay home from school. Here are a few guidelines to help you make that decision. We appreciate your help keeping our school a healthy environment for all students! 

  • A fever of 100.5 degrees or higher before school in the morning- do not have the student return to school until the student has been fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medications. 
  • A “heavy cold or hacking cough” even without a fever (cough that disturbs normal activity)
  • Diagnosis from a physician of Whooping Cough/Pertusis-student should stay home from school until he/she has received 5 full days worth of antibiotic treatment.
  • Vomiting- student should stay home until he/she can keep food down and is free of symptoms for 24 hours. The student should stay home 24 hours after their last vomit. They must also be symptom and fever-free for 24 hours without medicine. 
  • Diarrhea-student should remain home until free of symptoms for 24 hours or have a physician's note stating otherwise. For example, Your child is on antibiotics and has GI side effects,  Your child has a medical diagnosis of ongoing diarrhea issues. 
  • Pink eye (conjunctivitis)-there can be many causes for red eyes, not all of which are communicable. Refer to your healthcare provider for an evaluation. The Academy of Pediatrics advises that children with purulent conjunctivitis (defined as pink or red conjunctiva with white or yellow discharge, often with matted eyelids after sleep and eye pain or redness of the eyelids or skin surrounding the eyes) be excluded until examined by a health care provider and approved for readmission. With bacterial conjunctivitis, healthcare providers usually recommend exclusion until 24 hours after starting topical antibiotic therapy. 
  • Strep throat-student can return to school after they have been on antibiotics for at least 24 hours and are fever free. 
  • Chicken pox-exclusion from school for one week after the first eruption appears or all lesions are dry and crusted. Please have an MD note regarding the diagnosis of Chicken Pox and release to return to school.
  • Unexplained rash, blisters, or draining sores-student should see his/her health care provider for a diagnosis and recommendations. It is recommended to have an MD note to return to school.

Many illnesses are most communicable at the beginning. If your child is kept at home, fewer children will be exposed to the illness. Allowing your child to stay home and get well at the beginning of an illness will actually help him/her to be more successful in school and lose less school time in the long run. Remember- good hygiene and good hand-washing techniques can help to prevent many illnesses! 

Call your healthcare provider with any concerns during an illness! And remember, any time your child does go to the health care provider, please always send in MD notes that are applicable to the school. Information is always kept confidential but is beneficial for the school administration to be informed and aware.

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