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Illness/Special Health Care Needs

When a student is ill in school, the public health nurse, or designated staff member, will determine if the student needs to go home. Greenwich school district and the public health school nurses reserve the right to send home any student who displays signs of ill health or injury that, in the nurse’s judgment, may jeopardize the general welfare of the student and/or the class.

The principal or his/her designee makes the approval for dismissal. The public health nurse, or designated staff member, contacts the parent/guardian. When a pattern of numerous cases of a communicable disease (such as strep throat) occurs, the school notifies parents of symptoms of which to be aware. This notification is sent home via School Health Alerts emails or with the student. Ill students who are to be excluded to their homes may not walk home alone. Parents or authorized emergency contacts must escort the ill student home.

Communicable/Infectious Diseases
Students with any medical condition that may expose others to disease or contagious and infectious conditions within the school setting may be excluded from school and referred for medical diagnosis and treatment. Additional information concerning restrictions may be obtained from the public health nurse.

Hospitalizations and Injuries
Children unable to participate in PE class and/or recess because of injury (wearing a cast, splint, or using crutches) or illness, must bring a note to the nurse from the child’s physician indicating restrictions and the duration of restrictions.  

Any use of crutches or other assistive devices (including use of a wheelchair or scooter) in the school setting must be accompanied by a physician’s note indicating they are medically necessary.

Children who have been treated for an injury, have had surgery, or have been hospitalized even overnight must bring a note to the nurse from the child’s physician stating they may return to school and indicating any restrictions. Before a child may return to school after an absence due to such a condition, parents may be required to submit medical evidence that their child has recovered sufficiently to prevent exposing others.

Special Health Care Needs
Students who have a medically diagnosed chronic health condition, such as asthma, diabetes, life threatening food or insect allergies, seizures, cardiac abnormalities, chronic infectious disease, acquired disability, mental health conditions, or a significant acute illness or injury requiring treatment and a recovery period, such as mononucleosis, or a fractured arm or leg often require accommodations in a school setting to provide a safe environment where the child is able to achieve at a level equal to his/her ability.

For those students, access to education may require assessment and periodic reassessment of the child’s health status and level of functioning in order to determine what special services or program modifications he or she may need.

Close collaboration with families may include the development of an individualized health care plan (ICHP) and/or school health plan(SHP), and/or emergency care plan (ECP) to address health and safety needs for school attendance.

Related services may be necessary to ensure successful functioning in the educational setting with enhanced communication between health staff and social service providers in the school and the community.

Illness Guidelines