Stisted C of E

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Sickness absence

What happens if my child is unwell?


If your child is unwell and unable to attend school please phone the school number (01376 325116) and choose option 1 to leave a message as to why your child will not be in school. We ask that you state the reason your child is poorly (i.e. cough, sickness, etc.) as this helps us to be aware of what illnesses are about at any given time. We will phone you up during the day to check how your child is doing and to verify your child is at home. This helps us to decide if the absence will be recorded as authorised or unauthorised.


If your child becomes unwell at school, we will assess the situation and will attempt to contact you and ask you to take your child home if your child is too unwell to stay in school and take part in lessons. In the meantime, we will look after your child. If we are unable to contact you directly, we will leave a message and contact the persons you have identified on your emergency contact list.


Experience tells us that sometimes children feel unwell but this soon passes. It could be that they are nervous, upset or need to go to the toilet. If we feel this is case we will look after your child, offer them a drink and send them back to their lesson if we see an improvement. How long should I keep my child off school for?


How long should I keep my child off if they have been sick?


This will depend on what has caused your child to be physically sick. In the case of diarrhoea and vomiting, we ask parents to follow the recommendations of Public Health which is 48 hours.


If your child has been physically sick, we normally expect the child to be off school for a minimum 24 hours in order to establish why they have been sick.


However, each case needs to be considered on a case by case basis. For example if a child has been sick for another reason e.g. through excessive coughing and shows no signs that the sickness is ongoing and could lead to infection, then 24 hours may be sufficient. We do not want children off school when they are well enough to be in school but we also don’t want children in school if they have a ‘bug’ which can spread to other children and staff.


Children with mild ailments such as coughs or colds can still be taught in school. If a child is too ill to learn and take part in the lessons or has been sick, we may contact you and ask you to collect your child. 


If parents are in any doubt, please see the following NHS guide advising parents if a child should be in school or off school and for how long: