• It is sometimes difficult to decide when and how long to keep a child home from school. The timing of the absence is often important in order to decrease the spread of disease to others, and to prevent your child from acquiring other illnesses while his/her resistance is lowered. The following guidelines represent the more common childhood illnesses and recommendations.

    COMMON COLD - Symptoms include irritated throat, watery discharge from the nose and eyes, sneezing, chills, and general body discomfort. Your child should stay home if symptoms interfere with an ability to learn. If your child is attending school with a cold, please remind him/her to either cough into his/her sleeve or cover his/her nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. Be sure to remind your child to wash his/her hands often and especially after coughing and sneezing.
    FEVER - If your child's temperature is 100 degrees Fahrenheit (37.8 degrees Celsius) or greater, he/she should stay home until fever-free for 24 hrs. without Tylenol or Motrin or other fever reducer.
    FLU - The symptoms of flu usually start suddenly and may include the following - fever, headache, fatigue, cough, sore throat, runny nose and body aches. Diarrhea and vomiting are common in children.
    PINKEYE - Symptoms of pinkeye include redness and swelling of the membranes of the eye with burning or itching, tearing, crustiness on the eyelids (especially noticeable upon awakening). Children who are diagnosed with bacterial conjunctivitis must be on an antibiotic ophthalmic therapy for 24 hrs. before returning to school AND free of discharge.
    STREP THROAT - Your child should remain home from school until he/she has received 24 hrs. of antibiotic therapy. Most physicians will advise rest at home for 1-2 days after strep infection.
    SKIN RASH - A physician should evaluate skin rashes of unknown origin before your child is sent to school. A note from the physician is required stating that your child is not contagious and able to return to school.
    DIARRHEA AND VOMITING - If your child experiences vomiting and diarrhea during the night, he/she should not be sent to school the following day.
    If your child has been prescribed medication that must be given during the school day, the physician must write an order/script for the medication to be given in school. Nurses in PA cannot administer any medication (prescribed or over-the-counter) without a medical order.  Access a medication form on the health services website.