Guidelines for Keeping Sick Children Home
Each day many parents are faced with a decision: should they keep their sick child at home or send them off to school? Often the way a child looks and acts can make the decision an obvious one. Please consider these guidelines:
- Colds: Please keep your child at home if he/she has a fever of 100 degrees or greater or is experiencing discomfort that would interfere with his/her ability to perform in school. (i.e. uncontrollable coughing, severe lack of energy). If your child experiences green nasal discharge that continues throughout the day, or a cough lasting longer than ten days, or is accompanied by fever or chills and is productive of discolored sputum, consult with your physician.
- Conjunctivitis (Pink-eye): Following a diagnosis of bacterial conjunctivitis, the child may return to school after the first dose of prescribed medication. Students with viral infection may return when eyes are clear.
- Diarrhea/Vomiting: A child with diarrhea and/or vomiting should stay at home and return to school only after being symptom-free for 24 hours.
- Fever: A child should remain at home with a fever of 100 degrees or greater. The child can return to school after he/she has been fever free for 24 hours (without fever-reducing medicine such as Tylenol or Motrin).
- Head Lice: A child with head lice should stay home until after the first treatment with a medicated head lice product. Following the treatment, parents or guardians will need to remove lice with a fine-toothed nit/lice comb.
- Impetigo: A child with impetigo may return to school 24 hours after treatment has begun. A doctor's note of proof of prescription is recommended.
- Rashes: Common infectious diseases with rashes are most contagious in the early stages. A child with a suspicious rash should return to school only after a health care provider has made a diagnosis and authorized the child's return to school.
- Strep Throat: A child with strep throat may return to school 24 hours after antibiotic treatment has begun.
A sick child cannot learn effectively and is unable to participate in classes in a meaningful way. Keeping a sick child home prevents the spread of illness in the school community and allows the child an opportunity to rest and recover.
If your student exhibits any of these symptoms at school he or she will need to be checked out and may not return to school until symptom free for 24 hours.