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Reasons to Keep Your Child Home from School

Should you keep your child home from school?


Children with a temperature of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher should stay at home until there is no fever for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medications. If your child returns to school with a fever, he/she could still be contagious.

Persistent Cough

If your child’s cough is worse than you would expect with a cold, keep your child home from school. If he/she suddenly develops a cough, has a hard time breathing, or has a fever, call your child’s doctor.


If your child has red eye(s) with drainage that is cloudy or yellow, crusting, and/or pain, call your child’s doctor. If child has bacterial conjunctivitis, he/she may return after beginning treatment.


Notify the school immediately if your child has tested positive or has been in contact with someone who has COVID-19. Follow the school’s return guidance for COVID-19.

Sore Throat

If your child has a severe sore throat or a sore throat with a fever, headache, or stomachache, keep your child home and call your child’s doctor.


Your child should stay home for 24 hours after treatment. Scabies is a contagious disease caused by a mite. Itching and a rash will be noted.


Any child who has vomited twice in 24 hours should stay home. Your child may return to school after 24 hours of NO vomiting or fever.


(ear, head, stomach) If pain disrupts your child’s participation in regular activities or is accompanied by fever, nausea/vomiting, or sore throat, keep child home and call your child’s doctor.

Head Lice

Keep your child home and treat, making sure all live lice are eliminated. Nit removal will need to be done daily. Contact your school for more information.

**Child cannot return to school with live lice.


One event of watery diarrhea is reason for your child to stay home from school. Your child may return after 24 hours of NO diarrhea. Call your child’s doctor if fever, rash, dehydration, or weakness are present.


Your child should stay at home until all bumps are scabbed and no new bumps have shown up for two days.

**Most children have received the vaccine for chickenpox (Varicella vaccine)


If your child has impetigo (red, oozing blister areas with yellow-gold scabs on the body or face), he/she should stay home until doctor says it’s OK for child to return.


  • When there is doubt in your mind about sending your child to school, consult your child’s doctor.

  • Make sure that your child’s school knows how to reach you during the day. Remember to update your phone contact numbers throughout the school year.