WHEN TO KEEP A CHILD HOME FROM SCHOOL (COLD AND FLU SEASON)
From your school nurses,
Kristen & Jen
Sometimes it can be difficult for a parent to decide whether to send children to school when they wake up with symptoms of an illness or complaints that they do not feel well.
In general, during cold and flu season, unless your child is significantly ill, the best place for them is in school where they have all already been exposed to the same germs and where they are less likely to expose other more vulnerable people, like the very young or very old. Remind your children to discard used tissues promptly, not to share personal items, to cover their mouths when they cough or sneeze, to keep their hands away from their face, and to wash hands thoroughly and often with soap and warm water.
However, there are some situations in which it is best to plan on keeping your child home for a day to rest or to arrange for an appointment with your health care provider. The following are a few situations that warrant watching and possibly calling your health care provider:
Persistent fever greater than 100.4 degrees orally, including a fever that requires control with medication such as Tylenol
Child is too sleepy or ill from an illness, like vomiting and/or diarrhea
Cough that makes a child feel uncomfortable or disrupts the class.
Sore throat that is severe along with fever and feeling ill for more than 48 hours, OR after known exposure to a confirmed case of Strep throat infection.
Honey-crusted sores around the nose or mouth or rash on other body parts; OR a rash in various stages including boils, sores and bumps that may be chicken pox; OR a significant rash accompanied by other symptoms of illness such as fever.
Red, runny eyes that distract the child from learning.
Large amount of discolored nasal discharge, especially if accompanied by facial pain or headache.
Severe ear pain or drainage from the ear.
Severe headache, especially if accompanied by fever.
Any condition that you think may be serious or contagious to others.
Whenever there is an outbreak of a specific contagious infection, the school sends out a notice to alert you to watch out for any symptoms. If your child starts to develop symptoms, it is important that you alert your own health care provider that your child had a possible exposure. Be sure to ask your provider when it is safe for your child to return to school, both for your child's health and for the health of the rest of the school.
Finally, if you know your child is still running a fever, it is not a good idea simply to give him or her Tylenol and send them onto school because as soon as the medicine wears off, you are apt to get a call from the school nurse to leave work and come to pick up your feverish child. It is better to let them stay home in bed with a fever and take their medications at home until they are off all medicines and ready to learn for a full day in a classroom.
If you find a pattern of your child asking to stay home from school, especially if they are falling behind or appear anxious by the thought of attending school, or if there does not appear to be any obvious physical symptoms, it may be a good idea to contact your school nurse and your health care provider to discuss your concerns.
Remember, whenever you keep your child home from school, please call the school nurse or attendance office in advance of the start of the school day and leave a message that your child will be absent.
Download New York State Department of Health's (NYSDOH) Seasonal Flu Guide for Parents (PDF). To view the guide in Spanish, please click here. You can also visit the New York State Department of Health website for more flu information.
STUDENT WEIGHT STATUS SURVEY
As part of a required school health examination, a student is weighed and his/her height is measured. These numbers are used to figure out the student's body mass index or 'BMI'. The BMI helps the doctor or nurse know if the student's weight is in a healthy range or is too high or too low. Recent changes to the New York State Education Law require that BMI and weight status group be included as part of the student's school health examination. A sample of school districts have been selected to take part in a survey by the New York State Department of Health. Port Byron Central School we will be reporting to New York State Department of Health information about our students' weight status groups. Only summary information is sent. No names and no information about individual students are sent. However, you may choose to have your child's information excluded from this survey report.
The information sent to the New York State Department of Health will help health officials develop programs that make it easier for children to be healthier.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE HEALTH OFFICE
- Do Not Send Medication (Prescription or Over-the-Counter) to school with your child. No Medication will be given unless the following conditions are met:
- A physician's prescription is on file in the health office stating: Medication name, dosage, time, student's name and grade.
- Written parent/guardian permission is required. Use this form to authorize.
- No medication, prescription or over the counter will be given without a doctor's order and parent/guardian permission
- No medication is to be sent with a student. A parent or guardian must bring in the medication, and it should be in original labeled container, unless student is self-directed.
- Unauthorized medications are not allowed in the building
- Medication forms must be renewed each school year. All medications must be picked up by a parent/guardian at the end of the year or they will be disposed of.
- Emergency/Health Updates: Please fill out this form and return to school. New York State law requires that we have this signed by a parent/guardian.
- Immunization: All students with a birth date after 1/1/94 must be immunized against varicella (chicken pox). As of September I, 2007 students entering grade 6 must have a Tdap booster per New York State Law.
Without proof of the proper mandated vaccinations your student will be excluded from school. Please submit a copy of the immunizations to the health office.
- Physical Exams: New York State mandates grades UPK, K, 1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th, 9th, 11th and all new students to have physicals. They can be done by the school physician or your own physician. If your physician will be doing the exam, please provide the health office with a copy immediately. If the health office does not receive a copy of the exam, the physical will be performed here by the school physician. Click here to view physical form.
- Dental Exams: As of September 1, 2008 students enrolling in pre-K, Kindergarten & first grade are recommended to present a dental health certificate which must contain a comprehensive dental exam.
- Absence: When your child is absent, please call the Main Office to report the illness.
- First Aid: The nurse will administer first aid to all students as in compliance with the school physician's orders.
- Insurance: Port Byron Central School District no longer carries accident/injury insurance.
Port Byron Central School District Athletics Department now uses FamilyID, an online program in which families can register their children to participate in Port Byron athletic programs.
Planning to try out for a sport? All students planning to try out for a sport must submit a copy of their current physical and sign up on Family ID prior to tryouts.
If you are having trouble accessing the PDFs, please contact the Health Office at (315) 776-5728.