Physicals and Vaccinations

Every student must have a current physical examination upon entering Parker School. The State of Massachusetts also requires that immunizations be up-to-date when entering school.

For entering 7th grade students (as well as new Parker students) these immunizations include:

  • Three doses of the Hepatitis B vaccine
  • One Tetanus booster (within the past 5 years)
  • Two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine
  • A physician documented history of chickenpox OR two doses of the varicella vaccine
  • One dose of meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MenACWY) – New Requirement

If your child plans to participate in the after-school sports program, they must have a current (within the past thirteen months of the start of the sport) physical examination completed by their health care provider on file in the School Nurse’s office. You also must complete the Interscholastic Sports Permission section of the Student Emergency and Health form each school year. This form can be found on the Health Portal (www.studentehr.com) under forms.

Students entering 11th grade:

  • A current physical prior to entering 11th grade (dated after 8/31 from the previous school year)
  • 1 booster dose of meningococcal conjugate vaccine (Men ACWY) received on or after 16 years of age. (One or more doses of MenACWY vaccine are acceptable as long as one dose was received on or after 16 years of age)

Meningococcal disease incidence peaks among young people 16-21 years of age. Implementation of a required booster dose of MenACWY vaccine for entry to 11th grade ensures that everyone is protected before entering the high-risk time period. While Massachusetts college entrance immunization requirements include MenACWY vaccine, young adults who do not attend college are also at increased risk for meningococcal disease.

When Your Child Must Stay at Home

Your child must remain at home or be dismissed if:

  • They do not have the required immunizations mandated by the Department of Public Health (DPH).
  • They have vomited or have diarrhea. The student may return to school twenty-four hours after the last episode.
  • They have a fever of 100.0 or higher. Students need to be free of fever for twenty-four hours before returning to school.
  • They have lice or nits. They must be lice free for re-entry to school.
  • They have a rash of unknown origin. They may return to school when written authorization from their health care provider is submitted to the school nurse.
  • They have conjunctivitis or impetigo. They may return to school when there is no drainage or redness and/or have been on antibiotics for 24 hours.
  • They have a contagious disease. DPH protocols are followed.
  • They are acutely ill or injured.
  • They have an uncontrollable cough.

This list is a guideline. The School Nurse reserves the right to dismiss students, who in her professional opinion, are possibly contagious or are too ill to be in school.  Parents/Guardians are also responsible for notifying the School Nurse if their child has a contagious disease. Parents/Guardians should inform the School Nurse if their child is returning to school after an extended illness or surgery.

Medications

The school physician has given permission for students to receive acetaminophen (Tylenol®), ibuprofen (Motrin® or Advil®), diphenhydramine (Benadryl®), and Tums® at the school with a completed Medication Administration Permission section of the Student Emergency Health form. A brief health assessment will be done by the School Nurse to determine need. This will include checking for fever, pain from an injury or orthodontic procedures, headache, etc.

Other medications to be administered during the school day (both prescription and over-the-counter) need to have parent/guardian permission and physician authorization and must be supplied by the parent/guardian. Medications (including inhalers and EpiPens) must not be brought to school or used by any student without a health care provider’s written order and documented permission of the student’s parents/guardians and the School Nurse. If a student requires over-the-counter medication or prescription medication while in school, it should be brought to the Nurse’s Office at the beginning of the day in the original container by a responsible adult. No student is permitted to self-administer any medication at school (including inhalers and EpiPens) without documented parent/guardian permission and prior authorization by the School Nurse. Student’s over the age of eighteen do not need parental permission but must comply with the school’s medication policy.

Medication Administration Policy

Any medication, prescription or over-the-counter, that needs to be administered during school hours, must be done so with the authorization of the School Nurse. No student may carry either prescription or over-the-counter medication including inhalers, at school without the permission of the School Nurse.

All medication brought to school must be properly labeled and in its original container. A health care provider’s order must accompany all medication brought to school.  A parent/guardian must also complete a Medication Administration Permission document or other note with the following information:

  • Name of student and date of birth
  • Name of medication
  • Reason for administration in school
  • Dosage
  • Dosage interval (i.e., every 4 hours)
  • Duration of administration (i.e., one week)
  • List of food or drug allergies
  • Name of student’s physician (or prescribing healthcare provider)
  • Potential side effects (if any)
  • Parent/Guardian emergency telephone contact numbers.

With parent/guardian permission, the School Nurse can administer acetaminophen (Tylenol®) or ibuprofen (Motrin® or Advil®) diphenhydramine (Benadryl®) or Tums® to students under the age of 18 (parent/guardian permission is not required for students over the age of 18). The School Nurse or other designated school personnel will do a nursing assessment and brief health history update to determine need. This will include observation for possible fever, pain from injury, orthopedic or orthodontic procedures, headache, etc. The dosage of the medication has been determined by the protocol established by the School Physician and is on file in the Nurse’s Office.

If your child requires long term administration of medication while at school (i.e., Ritalin, insulin, inhalers, etc.) or emergency medication treatment (i.e., EpiPen) please contact the School Nurse for further information and forms necessary for administration.

Please contact the School Nurse with any additional questions or concerns you may have.

Mandated Health Screenings

Mandated periodic health screenings for vision, hearing, posture and growth checks are done during the school year. The School Nurse is able to provide referrals to primary care providers and other appropriate community health agencies, including mental health clinicians.

Mandated screenings include:

  • Hearing, vision, height, weight, and body mass index (BMI) measurements will be done each year in grades 7 and 10
  • Postural screening is done each year in grades 7, 8, and 9
  • Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) is a confidential state mandated screening and early intervention for students whose patterns of substance use put them at risk for, or who already have, substance-related problems.  It will be done each year in grades 7 and 9.

Parents/guardians are requested to schedule an appointment with the student’s physician if any screening abnormalities are detected.

Dismissal Policy

Parents/Guardians should be aware that school health office policy states that students may not be dismissed early without parent/guardian authorization. This applies to ALL students under the age of 18, including those who may drive themselves to and from school. If a student becomes ill or injured at school, they should report to the Nurse's Office, where, if necessary, transportation home will be arranged. If the student has driven themselves to school, the School Nurse will make an assessment of the student's health status and notify a parent/guardian when dismissal is recommended. If the student is considered too ill or injured to drive home safely, a parent/guardian must arrange alternate transportation home before the student can be dismissed. This is also necessary because of the danger of a student being home alone without parent/guardian knowledge and his/her health condition worsening. Because of these and other health and safety risks, no student, including Division III students, will be dismissed early from school without receiving parent/guardian permission. A blanket statement for such permission is not acceptable. Parent/Guardian cooperation with this policy is appreciated.

For the same health and safety concerns, it is school health office policy that a parent or guardian must notify the school of a student’s known absence, or late arrival to school on a daily basis. Prolonged absences due to health concerns should be reported to the School Nurse. Parents or guardians are notified if their child is not present and the school has not received any prior notification from a parent or guardian regarding the absence. If you have any questions or concerns, please notify the School Nurse.

School Nurse Confidentiality Policy

A separate fax machine is available in the School Nurse’s Office to protect confidential health information. All student health records are kept separate from academic records to protect confidentiality of health information.