Health & Safety Protocols
District 63 follows the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) Guidelines for all exclusions from school, parent notifications, and reports. At times, a student's illness or injury may require further medical attention or removal from school. In case of a severe student injury, a 911 call may be required. Paramedics will make the decision to transport them to the hospital. Every attempt will be made to inform parents in a timely manner. Parents must provide up-to-date phone contact numbers and emergency contact numbers. Parents may be asked to come to school and accompany their child home or to a physician in case of illness or injury.
If Your Child Needs to be Sent Home from School for Illness or Injury - You will be contacted by the school nurse if your child has been injured or is ill and may need further medical attention. Persons on your emergency contact list have permission to pick up students without a parent.
- Chronic Illness
- Communicable Disease
- Head Lice
- Health Forms
- Medications at School
- Vision and Hearing Screenings
- When to Keep Your Child Home from School
If your student has a life-threatening allergy or life-threatening chronic illness, please notify your building principal and school nurse.
State law requires our school district to annually inform parents of students with life-threatening allergies or life-threatening chronic illnesses of the applicable provisions of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and other applicable federal statutes, state statutes, federal regulations, and state rules.
Federal law protects students from discrimination due to a disability substantially limiting a significant life activity. If your student has a qualifying disability, an individualized Section 504 Plan will be developed and implemented to provide the needed supports so that your student can access their education as effectively as students without disabilities.
Not all students with life-threatening allergies and life-threatening chronic illnesses may be eligible under Section 504. Our school district may also be able to meet a student's needs through other means appropriately.
District 63 observes Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) recommendations regarding communicable diseases. This communicable disease chart outlines the more common diseases, their symptoms, and the exclusion period for your child.
- Parents are required to notify the school nurse if they suspect their child has a communicable disease.
- In some instances, students with a communicable disease may be excluded from school or sent home following the notification of parents or guardians.
- The school will provide written instructions to the parent/guardian regarding appropriate treatment for the communicable disease.
- A student excluded because of a communicable disease will be permitted to return to school only when the parent/guardian brings a letter from the student’s doctor stating that the student is no longer contagious or at risk of spreading the communicable disease.
We are mandated to report the occurrence of some of these diseases to IDPH. In some cases, proof of treatment may be required to return to school. Children who are not completely immunized for a childhood disease may be excluded from school in the event of an outbreak of that disease. If your child develops any communicable disease - including COVID, chickenpox, strep throat, scarlet fever, mumps, whooping cough, tuberculosis, or measles - immediately notify the school nurse.
Contact the school nurse immediately if your child has nits or live lice. Rest assured that we are working closely with parents to help them eradicate this problem at home and to keep our students in school.
Head lice are a nuisance best avoided by common-sense prevention measures, frequent inspection, and effective treatment when necessary. They are often found in the hair around the ears and base of the neck but may be present on other areas of the scalp. Head lice don't carry any diseases. Children often have no symptoms but may have an itchy scalp. If close contact results in lice transferring, eggs that are laid may hatch in 7-10 days. Transmission occurs by direct contact with an infested person, usually head-to-head contact. Although we cannot prevent the incidence of students who bring head lice to school, you can assist in controlling its spread. All household members should be checked for the presence of lice. Remind your child not to share hats, combs, clothing, or hair accessories. If your child is identified with:
- If you have live head lice, you will be called to take them home for treatment.
- Nits (eggs) only: you should take them home at the end of the school day and treat them.
In either case, instructions and guidance will be given to help you with lice/nit removal and home maintenance.
A student sent home due to live head lice will be permitted to return to school and the classroom only when the parent or guardian brings the student to school to be checked by the school nurse, and the child is determined to be free of the live head lice. Infested children are prohibited from riding the bus to school to be checked for head lice. District 63 does not recommend specific products to treat head lice and urges parents to contact their own healthcare professionals for advice. Refer to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) website for more information about head lice and its treatment. Note: We no longer send home letters to classrooms when a student has nits or live bugs. Research has found that doing lice checks in schools is ineffective in decreasing cases.
- Asthma Action Plan
- Asthma Action Plan - Spanish
- Child Health Examination Form
- Child Health Examination Form Spanish
- Childhood Lead Risk Assessment Questionnaire for Children - Pre-K and K
- Cuestionario de Asesoramiento Infantil de Riesgo por el Plomo
- Dental Examination Form
- Dental Examination Form Spanish
- Diabetes Care Plan
- Eye Examination Form
- Food Allergy Action Plan
- Religious Exemption Guidelines and Form
- School Medication Authorization Form - Parents and Physician
- Seizure Action Plan
- Smile Dentist
- Smile Dentist - Spanish
Medications at School - Parents and guardians are primarily responsible for administering medicines to their children. If a child must take medication during school hours, the form School Medication Authorization should be filled out by both the parent and the physician. Administration of medications at school will be given at the discretion of the School Nurse.
- All medications will have written physician/APN orders, whether prescription or over-the-counter.
- If the dosage or time changes, a new order will be required.
- These orders will include the student's name, time, dosage, diagnosis, benefits of the medication, side effects, and emergency contact number for the physician or APN.
- Written permission from the parent or guardian.
- A School Medication Authorization Form must be filled out and returned to your local health office.
Medications and Containers
- The pharmacy or the physician must properly label medication containers with the child’s name, physician's name, name of the medication, dosage, and time to be given.
- Parents MUST BRING all medications and supplies to and from school.
- Medications will be stored in a locked cabinet at school.
- The School Nurse will record and document all medication administration and/or self-administration.
- A 911 call will accompany the administration of emergency medication.
- Emergency medications may include medications for seizures, anaphylactic reactions, diabetic hypoglycemia, and acute respiratory distress.
- Children who have parental permission and doctors’ orders for an inhaler may carry asthma rescue inhalers on their person. Students may carry no other medications unless they have diabetes, and then only on an individual basis with doctors’ orders. Children with inhalers may come to the nurse's office for monitoring after inhaler use.
- We do not allow cough drops at school because they are a choking hazard. If your child is coughing enough to require a cough drop, they should stay home and recover from their illness.
Adequate vision and hearing are paramount to educational performance. Impaired vision and/or hearing in children can seriously impede learning and contribute to the development of academic, emotional, and behavioral problems. Early discovery and treatment can prevent or alleviate many of these problems.
Hearing loss can happen anytime during life (from before birth to adulthood). There are many causes of hearing loss, including genetics, infections, noise, aging, trauma, and some medications. Hearing loss seriously affects a child’s ability to communicate because it interferes with normal language development and learning. It may affect a child’s ability to develop normal speech and isolate them from everyday surroundings, including parents, other family members, and playmates.
Vision loss can also happen anytime during life. Babies can be born unable to see, and vision loss can occur anytime during a person’s life. Vision loss can be caused by damage to the eye itself, the eye being misshaped, or even by a problem in the brain. In the United States, the most prevalent disabling childhood conditions are vision disorders, including amblyopia, strabismus, and significant refractive errors. Early detection increases the likelihood of effective treatment.
Children experiencing hearing or vision loss often are unaware they do not hear or see as they should. For this reason, it is up to the adults responsible for the child’s health care and educational process to identify those children with hearing or vision problems and ensure they receive the appropriate follow-up care.
Vision and Hearing Screening - To prevent the detrimental effects of hearing and vision loss in children, the Illinois Department of Public Health implemented the Illinois Child Vision and Hearing Test Act (410 ILCS 205/), which mandates vision and hearing screening programs for preschool and school-age children. Screenings are required at specific age and grade levels and must be done by technicians/nurses trained and certified by the Department. These screenings result in approximately one million children screened annually for both vision and hearing.
Vision and Hearing Screening Mandates - Hearing screening must be provided annually for preschool children three years of age or older in any public or private educational program or licensed childcare facility and for all school-age children in grades kindergarten, first, second, and third; are in special education class; have been referred by a teacher, or are transfer students. These screening services are provided in all public, private, and parochial schools. Instead of the screening services required, a completed and signed report form indicating the child had an ear examination by a physician and an audiological evaluation conducted by an audiologist within the previous 12 months is acceptable.
Vision screening must be provided annually for preschool children three years of age or older in any public or private educational program or licensed childcare facility and for school-age children in kindergarten, second, and eighth grades; are in special education class; have been referred by a teacher, or are transfer students. Such screening services are provided in all public, private, and parochial schools. Instead of the screening services required, a completed and signed report form indicating that an eye examination by a doctor specializing in diseases of the eye or a licensed optometrist has been administered within the previous 12 months is acceptable.
A student's parent or legal guardian may object to hearing or vision screening tests for their children on religious grounds. If a religious objection is made, a written and signed statement from the parent or legal guardian detailing such objections must be presented to the local school authority.
Screening Personnel - Mandated screening services must be provided by vision and hearing screening technicians trained and certified by the Department. Candidates must meet the prerequisite requirements to apply and be considered for training. To become certified, eligible candidates are required to attend and pass hearing and vision training courses conducted by the Department.
Sick children should stay home until they have recovered and are no longer contagious. If your child has:
- Fever: Usually a sign of a viral or bacterial infection. Children with a fever of 100.4 degrees F or higher should be kept home for at least 24 hours after they are fever-free. Children with a fever greater than 100.4 degrees F will be sent home from school. This child will be excluded from school for 24 hours after s/he is fever-free.
- Vomiting or diarrhea: A child should be kept home until s/he has not vomited or had diarrhea for 24 hours. Don't hesitate to get in touch with a physician if your child appears dehydrated or has not been able to eat or drink for 24 hours. Children with vomiting or diarrhea will be sent home from school pending an assessment by the Certified School Nurse or Registered Nurse in your child's building.
- Rashes: Many childhood illnesses, allergies, and infections show up with a rash. Children who come to school with a rash may be sent home unless accompanied by a note from a healthcare provider, MD, or APN, stating that the rash is not contagious. This is part of the IDPH guidelines for schools.
- Children should bring a physician's note for return to school after any serious injury, accident, illness, hospitalization, rashes, infectious diseases, or eye infections.
Activity Restrictions - Students may have a written parent request to be excused from any activity for three days, given a reasonable request. After that time, a written note from a physician will be required. Children with casts, splints, or stitches may not participate in physical education activities or recess. Written clearance from a physician must be provided to return to these activities. Students who cannot participate in gym will also be restricted from participating in recess.
Homebound Students - Children who have had an injury or illness that will result in an absence of 10 or more consecutive days should contact the School Nurse for information regarding homebound tutoring.