When to keep your child home

Keep your child home if any of these conditions exists:

  • Temperature of 100 degrees or more within the past 24 hours (without Tylenol or other anti-fever medication)
  • Vomiting or diarrhea within the past 24 hours
  • When Strep is suspected, but the results of a throat culture are not yet known
  • A positive throat culture for strep: student should be on antibiotic treatment for 24 hours before returning to school
  • Any symptoms of acute illness such as persistent cough or runny nose accompanied by body aches
  • A red eye with crust, mucous or excessive tearing (until diagnosed by a physician and treated with medication for 24 hours if “pink eye”)
  • Any skin lesion with honey-brown crusts (until diagnosed by a physician and treated with medication for 24 hours if “impetigo”)
  • Skin Lesion: A mildly itchy ring shaped pink patch with a scaly, raised border and a clear center (until diagnosed by a physician and treated with anti-fungal cream if “ringworm”)
  • Any Rash ( until determined to be non-communicable by physician)
  • If your child requires any medication for pain stronger than Tylenol or Ibuprofen, they should not attend school

These guidelines will help you determine if your child should return to school. Your child should look and behave like him/herself for 24-48 hours before returning to school. A sick child who returns to school too soon is at risk for picking up other infections due to lowered immunity. A child who is still sick is likely to infect other students and staff.

Please notify school nurse if your child develops any communicable condition such as: Strep Throat, Chicken Pox, Pinworm and Head Lice.

Remind your child that frequent hand washing is the most effective means of preventing the spread of communicable diseases.

Head Lice

Students may return when appropriately treated with a pediculicide. Your child's School Nurse is a valuable resource in the prevention and treatment of head lice. No pediculicide is 100% effective; therefore, removal of all nits is essential to prevent reinfestation. Please notify the School Nurse if your child has been treated for head lice. It is advisable for parents to check their child's hair for head lice weekly.

http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/lice/head/treatment.html

MRSA (Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus)

Staphylococcus aureus ("staph") are bacteria commonly found in the noses and on the skin of healthy people. Staph infections have been around for a long time, causing mild to severe illness. Staph with resistance to the antibiotic methicillin (and other related antibiotics) is known as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus or "MRSA." Resistance means that a particular antibiotic will not work against those bacteria.

Staph that is present on or in the body without causing illness is called "colonization." At any given time, from 20 to 50 percent of the general population is colonized with staph bacteria; some may be MRSA while others are not antibiotic-resistant.

Staph is passed from person to person through direct contact with skin or through contact with contaminated items. The bacteria may live in people's noses and on their skin and most of the time does not cause any problem. Staph can enter the body through breaks in the skin and sometimes cause infections. Mild infections may look like a pimple or a boil and can be red, swollen, painful, or have pus or other drainage. More serious infections may cause pneumonia, bloodstream infections or surgical wound infections. The main ways to prevent staph infections are to wash hands and care for wounds properly.

Advice for Parents

Clean wounds and cover them with a clean, dry bandage. Wounds that do not heal properly need medical attention. The only way to determine if an infection is caused by MRSA is through laboratory testing ordered by a physician or other health care provider. Immediately notify the school nurse of any suspected or confirmed cases of MRSA. Teach children to wash their hands regularly, such as before eating and after toileting. Be sure your family members use antibiotics properly. Take all that are prescribed, even if the symptoms stop before the prescription is used up. Do not share prescriptions. Children who participate in sporting events should wash their hands after each practice and game. They should not share equipment, uniforms, towels or other personal items (e.g., razors). Wash uniforms and towels with hot water and detergent after each use. More information about MRSA can be found at:

Community onset MRSA: www.cdc.gov/mrsa

www.health.state.pa.us

Information on MRSA specifically relating to sports is available via the website of the National Collegiate Athletic Association.