Health Services » Guidelines For School Attendance

Guidelines For School Attendance

Please refer to the RPS Health Services Parent Responsibilities/Student Expectations for full details.
Attendance Guidelines During the COVID-19 Pandemic:
Every morning BEFORE coming to school, Parents are required to complete the Daily Home Screening Checklist with their student(s).
Every morning BEFORE coming to school, School Staff are required to complete the Daily Home Screening Checklist.
It is CRITICAL that if your child has any of the following symptoms; YOU MUST KEEP THEM HOME:
    • Temperature of 100.0 or greater
    •  Difficulty breathing/shortness of breath
    • Cough
    • Sore throat
    • Chest pressure
    • Runny nose or nasal congestion
    • Body aches or chills
    • Fatigue
    • Headache
    • Nausea/vomiting
    • New loss of taste or smell
    • Diarrhea (more commonly seen in children)
If your child is experiencing any of the above symptoms, please call your physician. 
  •  If your physician has an alternative diagnosis (example: allergies/strep throat) for your child’s symptoms, you MUST present a doctor’s note to the school health office BEFORE your child can return to  school.
  • Your child should stay home until symptoms have improved and they have been fever-free for at least 24 hours WITHOUT  the use of fever reducing medication (ex: Tylenol or Ibuprofen).
  • Without an alternative diagnosis, your child may need to isolate for 10 days OR have a negative COVID test (PCR test is required, do not do the antigen test) in order to return to school sooner.
COVID Testing/Return to School Protocol:
  1. If your child tests positive for COVID-19, you will receive a phone call from your Local Board of Health or the MA Contact Tracing Collaborative (CTC). It is CRITICAL that you answer this phone call in order to help identify close contacts, help prevent transmission of COVID-19  and to receive critical health guidance/instructions.  Your child will have to quarantine for a period of time as directed by your Local Board of Health. They can only return to school after cleared to do so by your Local Board of Health AND their symptoms have lessened and they have been fever-free for at least 24 hours without the use of medication like Tylenol or Motrin.
  2. If any member of your household is awaiting a COVID-19  test due to possible exposure (not routine testing), please keep your child home until you find out the results.
  3. If a household member or close contact has tested positive for COVID-19, your child will be required to quarantine for 14 days after their LAST contact with that individual.  If your child lives with an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19 and is unable to separate from them, they will need to quarantine for up to 24 days (10 days while the individual is COVID-19 positive and another 14 days to quarantine).
  4. If your child travels to a high-risk state (please see the following website:, to identify which states are high-risk), your child will need to produce a negative COVID-19 test result that has been administered up to 72-hours prior to your arrival in Massachusetts. If not obtained before entry to Massachusetts, a test may be obtained after arrival, however all such arriving travelers must immediately begin the 10-day quarantine until a negative test result has been received. (PCR test is required, do not do the antigen test)


School nurses are here to help and answer questions or any concerns that you may have!  
Respect and as much confidentiality as possible will be maintained at all times.  Some information, such as positive COVID-19 test results, will need to be shared with the Board of Health for effective contact tracing. 
 *PLEASE reach out to your school nurse if:
  • Your child has symptoms
  • Your child or household members/close contacts have tested positive for COVID-19.
  • Your child has traveled to a high-risk state.
  • You have any questions or need more guidance . 
General Guidelines:
 Generally speaking, any child with a fever of 100.0 and above, or an illness with fever that produces chills muscle aches, sore throat, or sweating, should remain at home until 24 hours after the fever has resolved without fever reducing medicine, however due to the COVID-19 pandemic, please refer to the above guidelines.

Strep-throat, Conjunctivitis or impetigo (a rash with pustules) requires 24 hours of medication as prescribed by the physician before a student returns to school.

A child with a rash or skin condition that is undiagnosed by a physician should remain at home until all lesions are healed, or the child is seen and cleared by their physician.

Parents whose children have had any of the above conditions should contact the school nurse so that we may ease the transition back to school after an illness and implement communicable disease control in the school or classroom.

Generally speaking, your child may attend school with a cold, however, if your child has copious amount of nasal drainage or persistent coughing that interferes with the ability to participate in class they should stay home.  Children with persistent cold symptoms should see their primary care physician. Currently, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, children with cold like symptoms should not attend school, please refer to the above COVID-19 guidelines for more details.

The School Nurses do not have cold medicine in the school. If your child requires cold medicine before school, chances are that will wear off by lunchtime. If you feel that your child will need another dose of over the counter medicine while at school, please call the school nurse, plan to bring the medicine in, and fill out the Medication Authorization form. Currently, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, children with cold like symptoms should not attend school, please refer to the above COVID-19 guidelines for more details.

If a mid-day dose of antibiotics is required, no-problem! Call the school nurse and we can accommodate your child's needs. You can print the Medication Authorization Form from the web-page. A responsible adult (age 18 or older) must bring medicine to school.

Your child may attend school if he/she needs short-term inhalers or nebulizers for acute RAD/Asthma or Cold. Please fill out the Student Asthma Action Plan Form and have your child's physician sign it. More pediatricians are prescribing inhalers for persistent cold symptoms. Ask your pediatrician for an extra inhaler for school or call the school nurse to make arrangements. While your there, ask your pediatrician for a spacer (Aerochamber), it makes it easier for you child to inhale the medication and its more effective.

Thank you for your cooperation in keeping our school a healthy place to learn.