It is difficult to provide guidance on every possible situation that may require a student to be dismissed or excluded from school. Our goal is to keep students in school, ready to learn. The following information is meant to be a guide and help one understand how and when a decision to dismiss or exclude is determined.

Guiding Principles

  1. Our collective health relies, in part, on individual attention and responsibility. If you, as a staff member, or student feels unwell, please consider the need to stay home.
  2. Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) communicable disease guidelines for quarantine and isolation will be followed when an individual tests positive for, or is exposed to, any communicable disease.
  3. School Nurse assessment is guided by Standards of Practice for School Nurses.
  4. Each student or staff illness is assessed to determine the need for dismissal or exclusion, based on State and Federal recommendations, and these guidelines.
  5. If a student or staff member is sent home from school by the school nurse, he/she is not allowed to return to school the following day, as most symptoms require at least 24 hours to resolve.

Symptoms/Conditions for Dismissal and/or Exclusion

  1. Fever (elevated temperature of 100.0 or higher) upon arrival or during school hours. Must remain home until fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medicines such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil).
  2. Vomiting and/or diarrhea, with 2 or more episodes within the previous 24 hours or during the school day. Once dismissed, the student may not return to school until there has been no vomiting and/or diarrhea for 24 hours.
  3. Rash of unknown origin, particularly those accompanied by fever or behavior change suggestive of infectious disease. Must be evaluated by a doctor and must have documentation that the student is able to return to school and is not contagious.
  4. Live head lice. Must be treated at home, and then re-checked by the school nurse, preferably with parent/guardian present, upon return to school.
  5. Irritability, lethargy, persistent crying, difficulty breathing, or other signs of severe illness.