School Health Services
St. John the Evangelist School is committed to providing a school environment that enhances learning and academic achievement by supporting health and wellness. The goal of the Health Office is to enhance the educational process of the students of St. John the Evangelist School by identifying and modifying or removing health related barriers to learning. This is accomplished through comprehensive assessments and follow-up care, as well as by fostering health education that can be carried with the students in the future. All policies and procedures utilized in the Health Office are in accordance with Massachusetts General Law, as well as guidelines directed by the Center for Disease Control and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.
HEALTH OFFICE GUIDELINES
Physical Examination/Immunization Requirements
All students entering grades Preschool, Pre K, K, 4,and 7 are required by law to have a physical examination form with age appropriate immunizations documented by the physician on file in the Health Office. Additionally, any new or transferring students must provide this documentation as well. It is important that any required physical examination forms be submitted as soon as possible, when requested. All students in Massachusetts are required to have specific immunizations. Students must be immunized against several diseases. Please see school nurse for list of requirements. Massachusetts General Law and Canton Board of Health Policy mandates exclusion from school for students who are not in compliance with their immunizations
We would like to remind you of some important ways to keep healthy and when to seek medical attention.
The best methods of disease prevention are simple:
Wash your hands often, especially after using the toilet or diapering a child, before eating and whenever in contact with any respiratory or mouth secretions.
Do not share drinks, food or any item that may be contaminated with another’s saliva.
Cover your mouth and nose with tissue or into your own elbow when coughing or sneezing. Dispose of tissues promptly after use and wash your hands well.
Keep your child home if he/she has:
Evidence of a newly developed cold (runny, stuffy nose, coughing, sneezing).
The greatest period of contagion is the first 2-3 days after onset of symptoms.
A temperature of 100 degrees or more. Your child may return to school if fever free for 12 hours without the use of Tylenol (acetaminophen or Motrin (ibuprofen).
A suspicious rash.
A sore or discharging eye(s) or ear(s).
Had an upset stomach or vomiting within the past 12 hours.
Diarrhea within the past 12 hours.
A contagious disease (i.e., strep throat, tonsillitis, bronchitis, conjunctivitis, etc.) Until he/she has been on medication at least 24 – 48 hours from the first dose.
If your child should develop any of these symptoms during school, we will notify you and the child will be dismissed.
You should seek medical care if:
Your child is ill with a high fever longer than 48 hours.
Tylenol or Motrin cannot reduce your fever.
You have a sore throat that hurts to swallow especially if not associated with cold
You have any concerns about your child’s health. You know your child best.
St. John the Evangelist School is an allergy aware school. The School Food Allergy Program has been implemented. Teachers are trained to administer an Epi-Pen in the case of a severe anaphylactic reaction of an identified student. Anaphylaxis, a life threatening reaction, is most commonly identified with foods (peanuts, tree nuts, mold, eggs, wheat and fish), insect bites, latex products and medications. There is an Allergy Aware & NO PEANUT POLICY in place for the entire school building. There is no exception to this rule. Classrooms who have students with food allergies will receive additional education concerning those foods with “hidden” allergens as ingredients.
There is a NO LATEX POLICY in place for the entire school building. Latex gloves will not be used in the Health Office, classrooms, science laboratory or food service areas. The use of latex balloons in the school and at school sponsored events is NOT permitted. For the safety of all of our students and staff, students are prohibited from sharing or trading food. Please educate your child in this matter.
Good nutrition and regular physical activity are important components of a healthy lifestyle. We expect parents to provide healthy snacks and nutritious lunches to enhance learning in school. We must work together to ensure that healthy foods are available to students that also comply with the “Allergy Aware” policies of St. John the Evangelist School.
CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT
Massachusetts General Law C. 119, s. 51A mandates that the Department of Social Services (DSS) receives reports of suspected child abuse and neglect. It also lists mandated reporters and defines their responsibilities. The state requires that mandated reporters (including, but not limited to: public/private school teachers, nurses and educational administrators contact DSS and file a “51A” report when they have reasonable cause to suspect that a child under the age of 18 is suffering from physical, sexual, or emotional abuse or neglect.
SICKNESS AT SCHOOL
If it becomes necessary for a student to consult the school nurse, he or she must first secure permission from the subject teacher, or other supervising adult, and then report directly to the Health Office. The parent will be notified if it is deemed necessary to dismiss the student for the remainder of the day due to illness, or injury. In such cases, it is the parent’s responsibility to secure transportation.
COMMUNICABLE DISEASE CONTROL
Common communicable diseases that must be reported to the Canton Board of Health are as follows: Chicken Pox (Varicella) Measles Poliomyelitis Diptheria Mumps Whooping Cough (Pertussis) German Measles (Rubella) Scarlet Fever MD confirmed Flu A certificate from the student’s physician must be proved to the school nurse before your child can be readmitted to school after diagnosis of the above diseases. Please contact the school nurse of you have any health related concerns or questions.
In order to comply with Massachusetts General Law, Chapter 94C, the following are requirements for administration of medication to students at St. John the Evangelist School during school hours. The school nurse is solely responsible for administration of medication in school. Faculty and volunteers may administer EpiPens in emergency situations if they have completed the EpiPen Training. Please contact Mrs. St. James if you would like training.
All medications, prescription or over the counter medications, require a physician’s order and completed parental/guardian permission form, or the medication cannot be given.
All medication orders expire at the end of the school year. Medication orders must be renewed at the beginning of each school year.
Acetaminophen (Tylenol) may be administered with written parental/guardian permission according to school protocol. All other non-prescription medication (over-the- counter) will be handled the same as prescription medication.
Whenever possible, medication administration should be scheduled at times other than during school hours.
All medication must be delivered to the Health Office by the student’s parent/guardian, or a designated adult. Students are not permitted to bring medications to school.
All medication must be delivered in a correctly labeled pharmacy, or manufacturer’s medication container. (Medications are not accepted in containers such as plastic bags.)
The pharmacy-labeled container can be used in lieu of a physician’s order only in the case of short-term medications, i.e., those medications to be given for ten (10) school days or less. If the school nurse has a question about the medication, she may request a licensed prescriber’s order.
Self-medication can be allowed under certain circumstances, after consultation with the school nurse. Unless authorized in writing by the school nurse, all medications to be self- administered must be kept in the nurse’s office.
If a medication needs to be given during a school sponsored event such as a fieldtrip, the school nurse must be contacted in advance, in order to allow time tomake special arrangements, prior to the outing. All medications must be picked up by a parent/guardian, before the close of the school year. Any medications that are not picked up by the close of school will be destroyed. There are links to administration of medication forms and in the Health Office. These should be used for any prescription or over-the- counter medication. Any prescription medication requires a physician’s order and signature, as well as the parent’s written permission. Over-the- counter medications can be given as long as there is a signed doctor’s order as well as a signed parental permission form on file in the Health Office. [Tums, cough medicine, cold medicines, allergy medicines, etc.] The administration of Tylenol or ibuprofen (Advil) requires only written parental permission.
The following is a list of health screening programs administered at St. John School:
The State of Massachusetts now mandates that upon entry to kindergarten the parent/guardian must provide the school with documentation that the child has, within the previous 12 months, passed a Massachusetts vision screening, which includes vision acuity and stereopsis, completed by personnel approved by the Department of Public Health. St. John the Evangelist School will provide vision screening for students in grades prek through grade 5 and grade 7. If a student fails the initial screening, he/she will be re-screened by the nurse prior to notifying the parent/guardian of a failed screening. Parents will be requested to follow-up with their primary care health provider and report the results to the school nurse.
St. John the Evangelist school will provide hearing screenings for students in prek through grade 3 and grade 7. A trained screening volunteer may administer the hearing test. If a student fails, he/she will be re-tested by the nurse one or more times before notifying the parent/guardian. Parents will be requested to follow-up with their primary care health provider and report the results to the school nurse.
The State of Massachusetts mandates that all students in grades 5 through 9 be screened individually for curvature of the spine. Any deviation from the norm is reported to the parent/guardian. Parents will be requested to follow-up with their primary care health provider and report the results to the school nurse. Students and parents will be notified of the screening date in advance. Parents may elect to provide documentation to the school nurse of postural screening results from the student’s health care provider prior to the day of screening.
Periodically throughout the year, students may be screened for lice if indicated. Pediculosis, or head lice, is highly communicable and difficult to prevent, but if every parent takes the responsibility to check the entire family’s hair and scalp periodically, the spread of lice can be controlled. Educating students to eliminate the sharing of hats, hair products, combs/brushes and direct contact with another child’s pillow can best prevent the spread of head lice.