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 the school nurse for a list of requirements. You may email physical exams to Stephanie.Curran@sjscanton.org or please add to your child’s registration packet.
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 100.0 degrees or more. Your child may return to school if fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medications.
A suspicious rash.
A sore or discharging eye(s) or ear(s).
Had an upset stomach, vomiting or Diarrhea within the past 24 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 hours, we will notify you and the child will be dismissed.
St. John the Evangelist School is an allergy aware school. The School Food Allergy Program has been implemented. Teachers are trained to administer epinephrine using an auto-injector, for students with severe anaphylactic reactions. 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.
If your child is prescribed epinephrine by a licensed medical provider please inform the school nurse and send the Anaphylaxis Action Plan from the provider to the health office.
For the safety of all of our students and staff, students are prohibited from sharing or trading food.
An Allergy working group was formed in the summer of 2021 to discuss in classroom celebrations. The Allergy working group consisted of the School Nurse, Parent group and teachers from different grade levels. As a working group we came up with safe snacks for students to enjoy for their celebrations. The only acceptable snacks to include at this time are:
We ask that no baked goods or homemade baked goods such as cakes or cupcakes be sent in. Thank you for keeping our students safe.
If your child has a diagnosis of asthma please inform the school nurse. An updated Asthma Action plan (AAP) from your child’s care provider will be requested each school year. Please send the AAP to the health office even if you are not sending in an inhaler.
If your child has a history of seizure and has an emergency medication prescribed please send a Seizure Action Plan from the medical provider each school year.
Good nutrition, adequate sleep 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. Please make sure contact information is up to date in the RenWeb System.
COMMUNICABLE DISEASE CONTROL
Common communicable diseases that must be reported to the Canton Board of Health are as follows: Pneumonia, Chicken Pox (Varicella), Measles, Poliomyelitis, Diphtheria, Mumps, Whooping Cough (Pertussis), German Measles (Rubella), Scarlet Fever. A note 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 if 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 epinephrine auto-injectors in emergency situations if they have completed the required training. Please contact Mrs. Curran if you would like training.
All medications, prescription or over the counter medications, require both a physician’s order and completed parental/guardian permission form, or the medication cannot be given. Excluding the over the counter medications listed on the SJS Health and Parent Authorization form, these need written parent consent only.
All medication orders expire at the end of the school year. Medication orders must be renewed at the beginning of each school year.
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. Written parent consent to administer is still required.
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 field trip, the school nurse must be contacted in advance, in order to allow time to make 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.
Over the counter medications are items with an active ingredient listed and need to have an order for the student to administer in the school setting.
The following is a list of health screening programs administered at St. John School. If you choose for your child not to be screened, please submit in writing or email to Stephanie.Curran@sjscanton.org, that the child’s measurement or screenings not be taken. Please be advised that parent(s) will be notified of results that are outside of normal limits.
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 Pre K through grade 8. Parents will be requested to follow-up with the student’s primary care health provider and report the results to the school nurse.
St. John the Evangelist school will provide hearing screenings for students in Pre K through grade 8. 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. If your student had a postural screening completed by their primary care provider please send in documentation of screening. 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.
Body Mass Index (BMI)
The purpose of BMI screening in all schools is to gather valuable data that can help MDPH monitor trends in childhood obesity and identify possible systems wide solutions. Data gathered from the BMI screenings performed by school nurses and other school staff is a core part of understanding – and reversing – the rising trend in childhood overweight and obesity in Massachusetts. BMI screenings will be conducted in Grades 1, 4 and 7.
Pediculosis (Lice) Screenings
Students may be screened for lice if they present with symptoms. Pediculosis, or head lice, is highly communicable and difficult to prevent. Please complete check heads at home on at least a weekly basis and notify the school nurse for any cases. This is to help control the spread of lice. Educating students to eliminate the sharing of hats, hair products, combs/brushes and direct contact with another child’s head or personal belongings can best prevent the spread of head lice.
Health Services Forms
Stephanie Curran MSN BSN RN
Saint John School Nurse