Daycare centers have many rules and regulations they must follow regarding the health and safety of the children that are in their care. These rules are overseen by the state in which the center is located. Facilities normally inform parents of rules concerning fevers and other medical issues before the child is enrolled in the center. Parents are expected to follow all rules regarding the health of their child in order to protect the health of all the other students enrolled in the center along with the staff.
What Constitutes a Fever
A child that is in a daycare setting is considered to be running a fever when an oral temperature reaches 101 degrees F. Temperatures may also be taken under the arm or, less frequently, rectally. A temperature of 100 degrees F under the arm or a temperature of 102 degrees F rectally is also considered a fever in a child. While this may not be considered a high fever or even one that needs medical intervention, daycare workers are unable to determine why the child is running a fever and must be separated from other children in order to minimize the spread of illness. Parents may receive a call about a child’s fever before it reaches the above levels in order to make them aware of a possible need to pick up their child.
Being Sent Home
Child care centers must send a child home when they have a temperature of 100 degrees F or more under the arm. Fevers are one of the main symptoms of contagiousness in most illnesses, and keeping illness out of the daycare setting is important not only for the health of other children but also the health of the staff. The child running a fever will be separated from the rest of his class to lower the risk of other children becoming sick while a parent is notified and en route to pick the child up from the daycare center.
Returning to the Daycare Center
A child must be kept home until she has gone at least 24 hours fever free with no medicine. This measure is put into place in order to keep a child from returning to school while medicated and her fever returning as the medicine wears off. The child will be turned away if she is brought back to the daycare center the morning after being sent home. Some facilities will require a doctor’s note clearing the child of any contagious diseases before being allowed to return.