Thursday, May 7, 2009

Sending Sick Kids Home

I really thought this time of year was over. You know, the time of year when germy kids come to school and you just have to grin and bear it because you know they aren't really sick enough to send home but you're tired of wiping their noses and being sneezed on. Now it's just spring allergy time, which I totally don't mind.

But today I had to kick a kid out of class today for illness. I've never done that before against a child's will. Usually they're miserable and they want to go home. *sigh* Here's the scoop.

A child who had been out two days ago (the last day we had class together) with a fever came late today. When she arrived the parent helper was setting up snack inside while the class played outside. First her adult took her to the office and then she went to the classroom. When I realized she had entered the building but hadn't come out to play after a long time, I went to the classroom to make sure the parent helper was getting along OK with the student in the room.

When I got to the room the student was helping to set up snack (thank goodness today we had a packaged snack, and you won't hear me say that often!). Her adult informed me that the student couldn't go outside today because she didn't feel well enough to. I must've felt snappish, because I immediately told the adult that if she didn't feel well enough to go outside, then she shouldn't be at school. Her adult said to me, "That's what I said to her but she wanted to come." Ummm, who's the grown-up here, anyway? Apparently, the student now has a sore throat. This family is a bit germophobic because she can't get a flu shot, and now they're bringing their germy daughter to school to SHARE her germs???

Luckily, my director was in the hall and between the two of us we eased said child and her adult out of the building. But it was a struggle. After they left my director said they had come to the office with the same story and she told them to go home but they didn't. I'm glad she and I were on the same page because that could have been a nasty scene.

So, what would you do? Do you think we did the right thing? We have a family at school who will be returning from a trip to Mexico in a few days and the director's asked them to stay at home for 7 days after they return. Is that reasonable to you? We generally leave it up to parents to decide if their kids are feeling well enough for school, but I also can't babysit one child inside and still take the rest of the class outside.

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