Health Room

Medication, Screenings, and When to Keep Your Child Home from School

Jennifer Sypien

School Health Aide


Temporary care is provided to sick and injured students and staff members. Guidelines for care are based on those developed jointly by the Virginia Department of Education and the Virginia Department of Health. School Health Aides are employed and trained by the Health Department and assigned to our school. The School Health Aide is not a nurse, but works under the supervision of a Public Health Nurse who makes frequent visits to the school. Care is limited in scope and nature and is provided until the parent or guardian can assume the responsibility.

FCPS Regulation 2012, First Aid Emergency Treatment, Health Plans, and Administration of Medication for Students


  • Children with a fever of 100 degrees or higher are sent home. They should be fever free without medication for 24 hours before returning to school. This also applies if your child has vomited or has diarrhea. This measure helps prevent the spread of communicable diseases to other students.


Medication should be taken at home whenever possible. There are situations in which medications must be taken during school hours in order to meet student health needs. Students who require medication during the school day must comply with FCPS regulation 2012, First Aid, Emergency Treatment, Health Plans, and Administration of Medication for Students

  • The parent or guardian must transport medication to and from school.
  • Medication must be in original container including physician samples and properly labeled. This includes the name of the student, name of medication, dosage, and time to be taken.
  • At the beginning of each school year, a new medication form is required.
  • Parent or guardian may authorize administration of over the counter and antibiotic medication for 10 consecutive school days. Physicians must complete, sign, and date the order for all other medications.

Forms (Medication AuthorizationInhaler AuthorizationEpipen Authorization)

  • Lip balm, cough drops and throat lozenges, in their original container, may be carried and used by students as needed throughout the school year without completing a medication form. Students may not share these items.

Call the school health aide for more information at (703) 503-3710


The School Health Aide assists the Public Health Nurse with vision and hearing screening for kindergarten, third grade, and new students to the county.

The Public Health Nurse identifies medical and health issues through health information and registration forms and develops an individualized Health Plan for students with specific health needs. The nurse also serves as a resource to school staff for prevention and control of communicable diseases.


When to Keep your Child Home

Students with symptoms should stay home until a doctor evaluates their symptoms and determines whether or not they are contagious.

  • Rash
  • Watery and inflamed eyes
  • Fever
  • Sore throat
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea

The Fairfax County Department of Health recommends that children remain at home, fever-free for 24 hours after an illness, prior to returning to school. Remember to call the Attendance Line at (703) 503-3737 to report your child’s absence. Please state your child’s symptoms such as fever, cough, sore throat, nausea, or vomiting.


Taking Your Child Home

We will call you to pick up your child if he/she exhibits symptoms of illness such as: fever over 100 degrees, persistent abdominal pain, vomiting, unexplained rash, diarrhea, head lice, inflamed eyes with discharge, or persistent cough. We ask that your child be picked up as soon as possible. It is important to have all emergency numbers up to date in case we cannot reach you.


A parent or guardian must bring medication to and from school. Students may not bring medicine to or from school. You must also submit the proper paperwork for each medication. Your child must have the first dose of any new medication at home. A parent or guardian must personally collect any unused portion of the medication. Medications not claimed will be destroyed.


Remember: To limit the spread of illnesses, notify the school office if your child gets head lice, strep throat, chicken pox, or other contagious illnesses, and keep him/her at home.

Wellness Brochure