We have been seeing different kinds of illnesses diagnosed in our school recently, and we have had several students out sick. Many children come to my office soon after they arrive at school with a variety of complaints of not feeling well, possibly due to sore throat, earache, headache, stomachache, nausea, and vomiting. Sometimes all they need is to stay home for some rest, fluids and medication to help with some of these symptoms. We require that children with symptoms such as: fever over 100 degrees, diarrhea, vomiting, sore throat, rashes, red draining eyes, thick green nasal drainage, etc., need to stay home for 24 hours after these symptoms are resolved or a note from their pediatrician is sent to school stating that the child can return to school. Children who are suspected of having a communicable disease will be sent home for diagnosis and treatment. After a child is diagnosed with an infection, it is very important to keep him/her out of school for at least 24-48 hours after starting antibiotics. The best measure to prevent the spread of communicable diseases is good hand washing and proper disposal of facial tissues containing respiratory secretions. Having sick children come to school only to be sent home shortly after arrival makes the child uncomfortable, inconveniences the parent, and exposes other children who then become sick also. Please take some time to observe your child to make sure they are free from these viruses and bacterial germs that are going around. Please call me if you have any questions or would like to discuss your child's illness. If you have a change in address or phone number, remember to contact the school office. It is very important to be able to reach you in the event your child becomes ill at school. Have a safe and HEALTHY school year!