Sick child


With the Flu season upon us, it is sometimes difficult to know whether a child is too ill to go to school.  The following guidelines will help you decide.


Your child is too ill to go to school if he/she has any of the following symptoms:

  • Seems very tired and needs bed rest (this is common with flu symptoms).

  • Has diarrhea or vomiting.

  • Becomes short of breath or has an increase in wheezing during normal activity.

  • Has a cough that interrupts his normal activity.

  • Has a temperature above 100 degrees Fahrenheit by mouth.

  • Has pain from an earache, headache, sore throat, or recent injury.

  • Has yellow or green discharge from eye(s).

  • Breaks out in a rash.


Keep your child home if:

Temperature is 100 degrees Fahrenheit or above- Student must be fever free for 24 hours without the aid of fever reducing medication before coming or returning to school.  (Please reference page 6 of Northmont’s 2019/2020 Elementary Student Handbook for further details).  Although giving Tylenol or Ibuprofen before school will lower your child’s temperature and make him/her feel more comfortable, the temperature may rise again after the medication wears off.  

Diarrhea and/or vomiting- Do not send your child to school if he/she has vomited or had diarrhea within the last 24 hours.  Vomiting and diarrhea must have subsided for at least 24 hours before the student may return to school.

Fever, chills, muscle aches, coughing, sore throat, runny nose, congestion, headache- All are symptoms of Influenza.  A student is contagious 24 hours before onset of symptoms through 3 days after onset.  Your child should be kept home from school during the communicable period and/or for 24 hours after the fever has subsided or for as long as the student feels ill.

Common cold symptoms- Includes sore throat, watery and/or discolored mucus discharge from eyes and nose, sneezing, fever, chills, and generalized discomfort.  Student is considered contagious 24 hours before onset of symptoms and usually for five days after. Student should be kept home from school if he/she feels ill or is running a fever. 

Strep infections- Student with a fever, red throat with pus spots, tender and swollen lymph glands should be seen by a physician.  Untreated strep infections can lead to rheumatic fever or kidney involvement. Student should stay home from school until 24 hours of antibiotic treatment has been completed and/or until the fever has subsided for 24 hours without the aid of fever reducing medication.    

Suspicious rashes- We have to assume that a rash of unknown origin may be contagious until diagnosed by a physician.  Rashes such as impetigo, scabies, and ringworm are extremely contagious and the student must stay home until proper amount of treatment has been administered.

Head lice- If you find live lice (louse) or nits (louse eggs) in your child’s hair, contact the school nurse for information regarding treatment and follow-up.  


Frequent hand washing is the best way to prevent the spread of any illness.  Please follow these steps to help prevent and stop the spread of germs.

  • Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold) and apply soap.

  • Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap.  Be sure to lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.

  • Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds.  Need a time? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice. 

  • Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.  Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.

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