HEALTH GUIDELINES

Send to School or Keep Home?

Deciding when a child is too sick to go to school can be a difficult decision for parents to make. When deciding, use the guidelines below and seek the advice of a health care provider.

Parents are reminded that a medical authorization form signed by the health care provider and the parent is required for administration at school of ANY medication, including over-the-counter medication. Click to download a copy of the Medication Authorization Form or (En Espanol)

Send to School:

If your child has any of the following symptoms, he or she probably can go to school:

  • sniffles, a runny nose, and a mild cough without a fever
  • vague complaints of aches, pains, or fatigue
  • a single episode of diarrhea or vomiting without any other complaints

Please be sure the school can reach you if symptoms worsen during the school day.

Keep at Home:

If your child has any of the following symptoms, please keep your child at home, or make appropriate child care arrangements:

Chickenpox (Varicella)

Keep a child at home until ALL chickenpox blisters are dried and crusted over (usually 5–6 days after the start of the rash). Notify the school nurse if your child is diagnosed with chickenpox (Varicella).

Colds

Keep a child at home who has a runny nose AND a fever, bad cough, headache, or nausea, or if the child it too tired or uncomfortable to function at school. (A runny nose by itself is not necessarily cause to keep a child home.)

Nasal discharge (greenish) and/or chronic cough

Keep a child at home who has greenish-colored nasal discharge and/or a chronic cough. Arrange for evaluation by your healthcare provider.

Diarrhea

Keep a child at home who has had 3 or more watery stools in a 24-hour period– especially if the child looks or acts ill– or has diarrhea due to medication. Arrange for evaluation by your healthcare provider, especially if diarrhea is accompanied by fever and cramps.

Ears

Keep a child at home who has drainage from the ear and/or ear pain. Report this condition to your health care provider.

Eyes

Keep a child at home who has thick mucus, pus, or clear liquid draining from the eye. Extreme redness, irritation, itchiness, or pain, eyelid swelling, and/or light sensitivity may also indicate a contagious condition.

Fever

Keep a child at home until he or she is fever free (a temperature of less than 100 degrees Farhenheit) without medication such as Tylenol for 24 hours. Never give aspirin.

Lice, Scabies

Keep a child at home until he or she has been treated and is free of lice and nits (eggs). Notify the school nurse if your child has head lice.

Rash

Keep a child at home who has any skin rash of unknown cause, especially a rash accompanied by fever and itching. (To return to school, the rash must be gone or the child must present a medical excuse stating that the rash is not contagious.)

Sore throat

Keep a child at home who has a sore throat accompanied by fever and/or swollen glands. A child diagnosed with strep throat may return to school after 24 hours of appropriate treatment if he or she is fever free (a temperature of less than 100 degrees Farhenheit) and feels well enough. Notify the school nurse if your child is diagnosed with strep throat.

Vomiting

Keep a child at home for 24 hours who vomits 2 or more times; if vomiting occurs during the night, keep the child home the following day.

Fractures or Surgery

Keep a child home who has had a fracture or surgery until he or she has written approval from the health care provider to return to school AND the child no longer requires prescription pain medication for pain management.

Looking for a medical, dental, or vision form? Go to this link