When to Keep Your Child at Home

Please help us provide a healthy and safe environment for all students by observing the following when your child is ill. We encourage you to strongly consider keeping your child home if they appear to be ill. By sending your child to school if you are concerned they are not feeling well, you are potentially exposing other students and school staff to a communicable illness. This ripple effect exposes classmates and then their siblings and other family members to the illness. See Texas Administrative Code §97.7 Diseases Requiring Exclusion from Schools.

Your child is to be kept at home with these symptoms While your child’s medical provider can help determine if your child is able to return to school, it is important to make sure that your child is truly feeling well and able to make it through 6 or more hours of the school day. Please keep your child home and/or contact your child’s medical provider for:

  • Elevated temperature (100oF or greater, taken by mouth).
  • Persistent cough- if your child is coughing continuously, he/she may not be able to concentrate or function during the school day. and may disrupt others in the class.
  • Repeated vomiting and/or diarrhea within the last 24 hours, nausea, or severe abdominal pain.
  • Severe sore throat, possibly accompanied by fever, and feeling ill for more than 48 hours, or after exposure to strep throat infection.
  • Large amounts of mucous (liquid) from their nose, possibly accompanied with face pain or headache.
  • Red, inflamed or discharging eyes (conjunctivitis/"pink eye").
  • Suspected scabies, impetigo (honey-crusted sores around nose/mouth), acute skin rashes, eruptions, any skin lesion in the weeping stage, or any other infectious childhood condition.
  • Severe ear pain or fluid coming from the ear.
  • Severe headache, especially with fever.
  • Lethargic behavior.

 Note: If your child frequently complains of headaches, stomachaches and/or does not feel well, it is advisable to consult your physician medical provider.

There will be times when it is difficult to tell when your child is too ill to go to school.  Like adults, children have different tolerances for discomfort and illness.  Even with a common cold, some are able to function fine while others are miserable.  If your child is coughing continuously, he or she may not be able to concentrate, and may disrupt others in the class.  A day of rest at home combined with lots of fluids speeds recovery.  If you decide to send your child to school when he/she is on the “borderline” of being ill, it is a good idea to call the school nurse or send a note to the teacher.  Be sure to let the school know where you can be contacted in case your child’s condition worsens.

If your child complains of headaches, stomachaches or frequently does not feel well, it is advisable to consult your physician.


Parents/guardians should return the medical referral given to them by the school nurse. The written documentation should contain a return to school date and a medical diagnosis.

  • Fever: the child must be fever free for 24 hours without using fever-reducing medications such as Tylenol, Ibuprofen, or others.
  • Vomiting and/or diarrhea: the child must be vomiting-free and/or diarrhea-free for 24 hours without using medications.
  • Blistery sores or unknown skin rash, especially accompanied by a fever: the child must have a medical provider’s clearance before returning to school.
  • Strep throat, pinkeye, ringworm, scabies, or impetigo: the child must have completed 24 hours of antibiotics, fever-free for 24 hours without using fever-reducing medications, and symptoms continue to improve.

Note: If a child is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and they are given a medical referral to see their medical provider. They can return to school with a completed medical referral (given to them by the school nurse) with a return to school date and a medical diagnosis or “non-COVID-19 related diagnosis”.


When your child has been to the emergency room or hospital for any illness or injury, they must return to school with a note from the medical provider allowing for return to school and any necessary modifications or restrictions. Parents/guardians should ask emergency Texas-licensed medical provider for written documentation for the school.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact your campus nurse for assistance.