What Common Illnesses Keep Children From Going to School?


Missing school due to illnesses is never fun. What kinds of sicknesses might be keeping kids home?

We’re still in the midst of sick season—you may notice your coworkers coughing more or your friends complaining about sore throats. It can be obnoxious for us adults to deal with all of the kinds of sicknesses that are common around this time of year, but what can be even more difficult is when children become sick. Some kinds of illnesses can keep children out of school, putting their academic performance at risk. Let’s take a look at some common illnesses that can make school attendance an issue.


Some schools actually have a policy regarding fevers, stating that your child must be fever free for at least 24 hours before getting back into the classroom. This is both for your child’s health as well as their peers, as getting rid of a fever is a sign that your child is much less likely to be contagious. Typically, you should look out for anything higher than 100.4, as that’s a sign your child should stay put.

Stomach Bugs

Vomiting and diarrhea are both issues especially for younger children, as it can become a hygiene problem best dealt with at home rather than in a school setting. If your child is vomiting, follow a similar rule to fevers—wait until the child has been vomit-free for at least 24 hours. Stomach bugs are highly contagious so make sure your child is washing their hands regularly!

Coughing and Congestion

Minor coughing shouldn’t be an issue and, armed with some over the counter medication, your child should be fine to go to class. Make an exception however if your child is coughing or blowing their nose so much that they won’t be able to pay attention or may cause a disruption in the classroom. If these symptoms aren’t controllable, it may be best to stay home from school and focus on getting better.


If your child is experience a rash, you definitely want to keep them home. This can be the sign of a bacterial skin infection which are often highly contagious. If your child has a rash, get them to a doctor as soon as you can.

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