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<p>If a child in your preschool is sick, when is he/she allowed to come back?  How do the teachers decide whether to let a child in?</p>
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<p>I'm asking becuase on Thursday I dropped DS off at preschool and immediately heard a little boy with a REALLY bubbly, barking cough.  I asked the teacher if he knew that the boy had a cough and he said that the mom said that the boy was off antibiotics and thus okay.  He sure didn't sound okay to me.  Sure enough, by Saturday 5 kids in DS' preschool, including DS, had developed coughs and runny noses.  For DS, a cough is always bad news.</p>
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<p>Is it normal to let a child back in under those circumstances?</p>
 

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<p>Hmmm....usually if they've been on antibiotics for 24 hours, have not had a fever/diarrhea/vomiting for 24 hours, they are allowed back in.  So, I would say this is normal.</p>
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<p>If it was just congestion, a little coughing, I would keep my child in school.  This was the way I was raised and I dont have an issue with them being exposed to colds, as its normal building of a healthy immune system.  And besides, a little dimetapp does wonders :)  If it was a lot of coughing, and they werent aware of coughing into their arms or washing their hands constantly after coughing, I would say they should go home, as the congestion doesnt spread infection, but coughing and bad handwashing does.</p>
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<p>Keep in mind it could have also been a sinus infection.  The couching and runny noses are often related due to the amount of congestion involved, and nobody reacts well to antibiotics for a sinus infection (antibiotics only take the edge off, but the infection almost always lingers on until your body finally fights it off naturally).</p>
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<p>Some children are also often appear more ill than others.  DS was congested (seriously green mucus) and coughing (due to the amount of plegm/congestion) for a good 4 months at least twice per year.  Whenever a new teacher met him, they always told the administrator that he should go home....until the administrator told the teacher that this is normal for him.  Seriously, it was severe, but I also know that he wasn't ill, as his mood changes quickly when he is truly ill.  It was just a combo of cold/allergies that made him appear ill to people that didnt know him.  I know his case was severe, as no child that I have ever met has shown anything close to what DS experienced, but its worth noting that just because a child looks ill, they may be ok.</p>
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<p>also, a fever is considered anything over 99 degrees at our school, which I personally feel is a bit extreme.  For some children, a temp of 98.9 may be normal, while others it may be 98.1....one has a fever and one does not.  That being said, they would only check for a temperature if the child was acting sick...so it ends up being a combo of both appearance/mood and actual temp.</p>
 

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<p>Our school's policy is stay home 24 hrs after a fever/vomiting/etc. and 24 hrs after starting antibiotics.</p>
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<p>A cold without a fever is pretty much par for the course for the kids to come to school with - not on the worst days but certainly on the lingering days. Otherwise probably half the class would be absent a lot of the time. I am not saying it is not annoying but I don't see an easy solution.</p>
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<p>Also for a lot of things the contagious period starts before the symptoms really set in anyway.</p>
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<p>Even with something relatively clear-cut it can be hard. My son had pneumonia and we didn't know if it was viral or bacterial - since he brightened up on the antibiotics I bet it was bacterial, in which case he was not contagious when he went back. Otherwise he would have been out two weeks, which is how long the cough lasted, and my DH and I have 15 sick days a year between us.</p>
 

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<p>I think it is considered OK when the kids have been on antibios.We have a 24 hour rule for fever,vomitting,and diarrhea.When it comes to cough,sore throat,ear ache it seems to be up to the parent. I would keep my kids home longer for illness,but we are required to submit a doctors note if our kid missed 3 days in a row.Ds gets coughs that last a long time. I would be charged with educational neglect if I kept him home as much as I wanted.</p>
 
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