Monday, January 21, 2013

When Is Your Child too Sick to Go to School???

Right now, our country is experiencing a huge outbreak of the cold and flu. One of the biggest reasons that I believe so many people are sick is because parents continue sending children to school when they still have symptoms! I have seen a lot of my friends on Facebook this week posting that their kids have horrible coughs but they are sending them to school anyway because they don't have fevers. Our 2 year old has been perfectly healthy since Christmas and he just went back to school last week. After 1 class, he came down with a horrible cough. He hasn't had a fever so I wasn't overly concerned but I took him to the pediatrician today since his cough has worsened and he has a bad case of bronchitis which is HIGHLY contagious!  

If any of you follow the To Be Thode blog, you will already know how severe even a simple cold can end up being and if you have never read the blog, I suggest you click and read the story about their daughter, Jemma and what this family is going through right now. 

Please. Please. Please. If your child has any symptoms of a cold or flu, DO NOT SEND THEM TO SCHOOL OR DAYCARE!  These illnesses can be deadly for small children and it's just not worth it!!!

This is a list from Web MD on when you should or shouldn't send your children to school. Read it and then share it so others can be educated as well!!!

  • Fever is the body's way of destroying the germs making it sick, and it's a common symptom of infections such as flu. Keep your children home if their temperature is 101° F or higher. Wait until children are fever-free before letting them return to school.
  • Diarrhea is often the result of infection, food poisoning, or a side effect to medications like antibiotics.Keep children home until stools are formed and your doctor gives the okay. Make sure your sick child stays well-hydrated.
  • Vomiting is another way for the body to rid itself of the germs making it sick, and is usually caused by a stomach virus or stomach infection. Keep children home if they've vomited twice or more in the last 24 hours. They can return to school after symptoms clear up or your doctor says they're no longer contagious.
  • Severe cough and cold symptoms should keep kids home from school. A serious cough could be a sign of contagious conditions like whooping cough, viral bronchitis, or croup. It can also be a sign of asthma or allergies.
  • Sore throats can be a symptom of strep or a common cold. If your child has been diagnosed with strep throat, keep your child at home for at least 24 hours after starting antibiotics. If your child has a mild cold, it's okay to go to school.
  • Pinkeye (conjunctivitis) is contagious, and children should stay home from school for the first 24 hours after treatment begins. Symptoms of pinkeye include eye redness, irritation, swelling, and pus.
  • Headaches can be a symptom of contagious conditions like viral gastroenteritis, flu, meningitis, and strep throat. Opinions differ on whether a child should be kept home. If your child doesn't have any other signs of illness, and feels okay, your child can go to school.
  • Rashes can be the sign of contagious conditions such as chickenpox, bacterial meningitis, or impetigo. Children should be kept home until they're diagnosed. They can return to school after symptoms are gone and their doctor gives the okay.
  • Earaches aren't contagious. There's no need to keep a child with a mild earache home, as long as your child feels well enough to concentrate.
  • Mild cold or respiratory symptoms are no reason to keep children at home so long as their nasal drainage is clear and their cough is mild.


  1. I agree that sometimes children are being sent to school when they are contagious, but in our district parents have little choice. They are so draconian in their attendance policies that they harass parents for missed days and after a certain number (5 in a year) without a doctor's note (and how many people have the time and money to haul a kid to the doctor every time they have a little cold) they make you go to court where the judge tells you if the child misses one more unexcused day the child goes to juvenile detention and the parent goes to jail. It happened to me and nearly every other mother I know. I don't have to worry about it anymore because I homeschool. When my kids attended public school they averaged 5 absences and 2-3 doctor visits a month. Now, my oldest hasn't had a single illness in years, my two youngest get sick about 3 times a year and only have had to see the doctor twice in 3 years.

  2. I completely agree with this! They aren't going to miss anything if they miss school for a couple days! I read that little girls story, how heart breaking, strong prayers for her strength!! My son and I were at a party once and there was a child that had MRSA, I was so mad when I found out that the parent didn't keep them home and immediately cleaned our clothes, scrubbed our bodies.

  3. What a great list to have. I'm going to put it on my frig.

  4. Great info to know. But it is difficult on whether to send your child to school or keep them home because of the attendance rules at schools.


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