There has been a steady increase in the number of children missing school on account of assumed illness. We need the support of all parents and carers to tackle this trend.
To help avoid unnecessary school absences while promoting child welfare, the ACE team has produced this leaflet as a general guide to
help parents decide whether their children are well enough to attend school.
If your child looks or feels shivery or is unusually cold or hot, he or she may have a high temperature. There may be various reasons for this. A child with a high temperature should not be in school. However after feeling and looking better for 24 hours, a child should be able to return to school.
A slight cold and a cough does not disable a child from attending school. However children with heavy colds or persistent coughs should stay at home. A child whose cough is disappearing and who is feeling better should return to school.
A rash could be the first sign of one of childhood’s many illnesses, such as chicken pox or measles. The rash or spots may cover the entire body or appear in only one area. Do not send a child to school with an unexplained rash or skin eruption until you have contacted NHS 111 or your GP surgery for advice.
A child with persistent toothache should see a dentist without delay and one with earache should see a doctor without delay. A child whose only complaint is a minor headache does not usually need to be kept at home.
If you think your child has meningitis, get help from your doctor or a hospital at once. If vomiting occurs, your child should stay at home until he or she can keep food down. A child with diarrhoea should also be kept at home. If your child does not improve as you expect, contact NHS 111 or your GP surgery for advice.
Use this when deciding whether your child needs to stay at home. Work on the basis that sick children belong at home and well children belong in class!
Please remember that early morning aches often pass, so don’t keep your child at home 'just in case' when he or she could be learning in class. If you are not sure, talk to a member of the school staff, your GP surgery or NHS 111.
Please make sure that the school has these up to date. It is important that school staff can contact you during the day if your child is not well enough to stay in school.
If your child is unwell on a school day, always contact the school in the morning to let staff know.
If your child is absent from school for 3 or more days, or is often absent for short spells, the school staff may ask you to present a
doctor’s note to verify the reason for the absence. A letter from a parent / carer is needed when: