School Policy... Give me a BREAK!

United States
May 5, 2009 2:55pm CST
Advance warning: this is a rant... and you are welcome to join me... As I'm sure many of you know, my son is only 3 1/2, but I put him in school a year early in order to continue with speech therapy... So he's in our city's only preschool with a whole lot of other 3 & 4 year olds... My rant is based on this school's insistance that we send our children to school sick! The policy states if the child does not have diarrhea, a fever higher than 100, and/or is vomiting, they should be in school. WHAT??!!!! Here's a few things: I was raised that if you're ill, you should stay home so that 1.) you can get well, 2.) so that you don't make everyone else around you ill EVEN the experts tell ADULTS to stay home from the office to keep from speading illness! SO then WHY on God's Green Earth, would we send children, who for the most part still can't remember to cover when they cough or sneeze, don't carry or ask for tissues, and think washing their hands is punishment....I say again, WHY would we send them to school???!!! Also, how well do you work, study, learn, pay attention, participate or keep control of your impulses and emotions when YOU don't feel well???!!! So we send our little angels to school with fever's and snooty noses, with body aches, red rimmed and watery eyes, sleep deprived and expect them to behave and learn what the school insists is the premise of their policy: "We are teaching children from a very early age that attendance is important for their education and disipline is important for their life's success." OMG are you freaking kidding me???!!! These are THREE and FOUR year olds!! And you know what??!! I - me, the parent - I will decide when my son will stay home and when he will go to school. I - me, the parent - will decide WHAT disipline is important for MY child's life and I - me, the parent - will decide how that disipline is taught and or applied. And if that principal was standing in front of me know, I'd say, "AND DON'T YOU F**KIN' FORGET WHO IS THE PARENT HERE!!!" Okay, I'm done... Thanks for listening. Feel free to chime in!
1 person likes this
13 responses
• United States
5 May 09
you might want to consider homeschooling then, it only gets worse as they get older. They do not respect parents rights at all, and it is their way or the highway.
• United States
6 May 09
Your right, it's their way or they threaten to throw the parents in jail for the child's truancy . More and more parents are tired of dealing with the school systems threats and decide to homeschool their kids. I think homeschooling is a great alternative and is often looked at by the state as a form of "private schooling". But each person should check the laws in their state regarding homeschooling, each state has different laws and requirements for homeschooling.
• United States
6 May 09
Yes some states are very lax, and you do not even have to prove you teach a thing, then others are strict, and then in between are the others. We homeschool, and we love it.
• United States
6 May 09
Hi Cassandra & Melissa - thank you for your responses... I do expect things to get worse as he gets older... I just wish they'd actually DO what they preach - you know? All that stuff about educators and parents being "in this together" and "partners" in the "educational journey of our children" I also wish they'd remember that it's the taxpayers who pay their salaries and with the economy in the state that it is, you'd think they would WANT to keep kids in school instead of driving parents to other resourses... I'm better for having vented, thanks for listening!
• United States
6 May 09
Great rant!! I echo your sentiments exactly! I think you (the parent) is the only one who really knows if your child (especially this young) is up to going to school or not! you were the one up with him/her all night so if they --and you-- need to catch up during the morning who can say no?? On a more general level the school system's problem has always been trying to make everyon learn alike, act alike and etc! So.. they have to make the general rule for those morons who do send their chilren to school either puking or spirting! They have to set those boudaries to protect your child. I have seen people send their child to school with 103 degree fever and then "can't pick them up" because they "can't leave work"! What the crap kinda parent is that? Not to mention having no thought for the social aspect of not spreading illness to the other children! I think that is partialy why the general rule is there. I do not agree if they tell you that you have to send them if they are not running a fever or anything... only you know your child and how they function. But maybe that will help you make some sense out of the senselessness! (I don't know if that is a word or not!)
@magrylouyu (1632)
• United States
5 May 09
Where my girls go to school it states that if you have diarrhea, fever, vomiting that they should not be at school. Also pink eye, strept throat they shouldnt be there either. They are kind of strict here for the most part, and it's a little rediculous. The school they go to as well the teachers are saying this is what they do for disipline and that the parents should be doing it as well. I just agree and tell them what they WANT to hear. Overall it's an awsome preschool I just dont like their standards. I will tell them what they want to hear just to shut them the hell up. I do believe that alot of times they do forget who the parents of these children are sometimes. I feel your fusteration as I deal with this every week as well. Good luck with it, and seriously, just tell them what they want to hear. :)
• United States
5 May 09
Hi, thank you for your response... See, I kind of have an issue with just telling them what they want to hear because it only continues to encourage them to browbeat parent's into doing things their way. If I'm going to pay for him to attend school and I see something that is going on that I don't like, I have every intention of voicing my thoughts and concerns. I mean, I'm not one to go on the attack or anything, that's what I have MyLot for - to vent and calm down - but I certainly will bring things to light and perhaps make alternative suggestions or offer varying solutions to certain issues. I think it's a two way street - esp. because the staff/faculty is essentially substitute parents for those 3-7 hours each day - if they have something they're concerned about we as parents listen. Likewise, if we have something that we are concerned about, they as caregivers and educators should listen. We won't always agree, but it should be an open door policy when it comes to our chilren.
• United States
7 May 09
I completely hear where your coming from on that. I dont pay for my girls to be in preschool but I understand. I havent had an issue with the health or anything... yet. I just agree with the stupid things, for example the way they disipline the kids there. They tell me I "should" be doing it at home. I have told them that I do something else and that's what works for me. They said well that's wrong our way is right. So the next time they asked me I just agreed because I am not about to be told by teachers how to raise my children. I love advice but to be TOLD, nope not happening. I would just talk with the school and see what they say. They should be easy going with it and understand.
@Jae2619 (1484)
• United States
7 May 09
Our schools handbook says the same thing about, children are ok to be sent to school if they aren't running a fever of above 100, or have the runs, and are not throwing up. I always felt this was a bad choice. I have brought this up many times to our school, that I feel it's wrong. I always use the line... so your telling me my child and be sitting beside another child who's got a snotty nose, and coughing and barking like a dog and is just miserably sick, but since this child has no fever, isn't crapping their pants, or puking all over the place, they are fine. I think not. They say they see the parent's point of view, but won't change policy. They have called my home many times when my child's not at school, but I am the parent, I will not send my child to school if he's got a fever, even if it's only 99.9, lol... because that's when the kids are more susceptible to catching something which can turn into something major. We know our children better than the school admintrators, so why do they feel it's in their rights to tell us when to send our children to school. Not to long ago, my son come down with scarlet fever and major strep throat... needless to say it was because the parents of other children sent them to school when they had strep throat and it got all passed around and the school didn't feel it was nessasary to inform the parents of this outbreak becuase it wasn't bad enough yet.. Made me come unglued. If you don't feel your child needs to be in class, don't send him. Keep him home. That's what I do, and they can call and send me these letters stating we must attend a conference about how much school my son's missed. I always tell them the same stuff, if you'd keep the sick kids home, then the other ones would not catch it. I also stress that my little girl was born early and has a weakened immune system and if her brother brings home something from your school, she get's it 10 times worse. They always just give us a look and say ok, and we are done with things.
• United States
6 May 09
That drives me nuts. I dont want the kids sitting around my kids to be ill. Then I will have a sick kid and guess where they will be next. I will not send my kids to school ill, its better for everyone to not share the germs and let your kids get better so that they can get back to getting their education. I went on vacation last month and I guess we broke some sort of school rule. We are only alowed to take 4 days a semester off and we took a week long vacation. We are now in danger of being sued by the school district. My son was not behind and I talked to his teacher months in advance. Why should the school get more say in our kids then we do as their parents?
@sassy28 (835)
• United States
6 May 09
This is one decision that should be made by the parents. Last week our school sent home letters about the swine flu. Of course the next day my oldest allergies flared up, his nose ran like a faucet and he was coughing and gaging. I kept him home with me until I could talk to his teacher that afternoon. I did not want to have the school go into lock down because of his allergies. I think as parents we know more about of kids bodies and health than the school does.
• United States
6 May 09
Yeah, Sassy, you're right! It just so happened that last week, my son came down with a severe cold - VERY similar to the flu (not swine, but the regular one)... He was bad enough that a visit to the pedi was in order and as a parent, I feel that if you're sick enough to warrant a doc visit, you're sick enough to stay home! So after not just one trip, but TWO trips to the pedi in 4 days, it was determined it was a viral thing and he'd survive. LOL Now I have it and I'm glad I kept him home because if he felt as bad as I have over the last few days, the poor little thing would have been miserable in school! Thanks for your response.
@jayrene (2713)
• Philippines
6 May 09
what kind of school is that!!??? you're the parent, do what is best for your child. it's different here, we can let our child skip classes or absent if they are not feeling well, even if there's no fever as long as my child is not feeling well i will not let him/her go to school... and it's ok with the school. we give excuse letter as to why my child is absent. i would do like what you've done, and would probably say the same thing to school personnel if something like that is going to happen here.
• United States
6 May 09
Hi jay, thanks for the support! I'll certainly continue on my current path - he's my child, I'll make the decisions on whether or not he'll be kept home or not... Some could even bring up the point that Child Services may be adverse to learning that the parents are sending children to school ill just because the school insists! I'm sure the Board of Health wouldn't be too pleased with the promotion of spreading disease in a preschool either! (SIGH) I'm okay now... but mark my words, the school department will KNOW my name if they think I'm going to let THEM tell ME how to care for my sweetie-boy! Thanks!
@paula27661 (15899)
• Australia
6 May 09
"We are teaching children from a very early age that attendance is important for their education and discipline is important for their life's success." Are these people serious? There is nothing wrong with the above statement but does it say anywhere that the kid should turn up to school sick and spreading germs all over the place? Boy I can see why you're mad! I'm the parent of a seven year old and I have never experienced that kind of attitude from our school! In fact it was appreciated if we kept our little darlings home if they had a runny nose or a cough especially at such a young age. I agree that it should be up to you, the parent, whether you see fit to send your child to school when he is sick. Unbelievable!
• United States
6 May 09
Hi Paula, Thank you for your supportive response... I'm much better now that I've vented... Meeting scheduled next week with principal and teacher to address several issues... As my son is slotted for this same school next year, this will pave the road of what kind of relationship we will have...or it resolve me to put him in a private school...
1 person likes this
@kprofgames (3018)
• United States
6 May 09
I complete agree and have been down that road. I've gone toe to toe with principals and teachers before and I don't back down. Not very popular, but get my point across. I have two in a special education program and I've had letter sent home before about them being out of school. I formed a great relationship with their teacher - honestly, she's like a second grandmother to them. If they're having an off day or just can't get moving from a head cold or what have u's then they stay home and she doesn't mark them absent. Being a teacher she doesn't understand why these strict rules need to be followed for the obvious. I know there are parents out there that keep them home over every single sniffle and whatever, but when they're warm, eyes running and they can't raise their head off the pillow - in my book - they're sick. Don't tell me their fever isn't high enough to stay home because that's not happening. My daughter in jr high had trouble with her cycles. She'd be sent home from school 2 days a month. It was that way till her senior year. I got the letter and the school nurse backed me up. Finally I got a call that if I she missed anymore school they'd send a letter to the state because 'under law' she was required to be there so many days a semester. So, I packed her up took her to school and waited outside. She was sicker than a dog that day - she walked in went to the office and puked on the floor. When they told her they were calling home she said my mom is right outside. So one of the secrataries came and got me - apparently the principal wanted to talk to me. He had all the balls in the world to ridicule me for bringing her to school sick. I said simple. YOU keep sending her home - I'M NOT KEEPING HER HOME - so the next time you HAVE to call me about her missing school then you'd better check your records because I'm not calling her in - YOU'RE CALLING ME AND SENDING HER BACK HOME. Never had a problem the rest of the year. Shhhhh, I see stupid people.
• United States
6 May 09
Hi, thanks for your response! Hopefully, I won't have to "go toe to toe" often... I'm really not a confrontational person... I vent here to all you great moms, I get perspective, I calm down and I plot... I am a parent who believes you get more with sugar... until you put my baby in harms way... I've addressed the school nurse and his teacher on these and other issues and I have a meeting scheduled next week with the principal... I address it like "explain this to me like I'm 4..." Then I make my case. Certain things are NOT up for negotiation and certain things are. I try to find a very nice and respectful way of letting them know exactly where I stand with issues... And I make sure they know that I am not to be brushed off as a bi*chy parent, but someone who WILL address their superiors if I am treated with disrespect or if I feel my concerns are not being taken seriously. Good for you for standing up to them... it's really a shame that parent's have to take such an aggressive position when it comes to voicing concerns... What ever happened to educators and parents being 'partners' in this???
@meandmy3 (2229)
• United States
6 May 09
I for one will never send my child to school with a fever, now a cold that is different. After all I can not keep them home from October to April, now can I... Upset stomach, vomiting, fever are all reasons to keep a child home from school .
• United States
5 May 09
That school's policy sounded a lot like my mother's: We went to school. Period. I went to school with a fever. I went with menstral cramps so bad I could barely see straight. I went hours after surgery to set a broken wrist. I went to school no matter what. My brother and sister were the same way. My husband's family wasn't as bad, but his mom was strict about school. His mom made them go to the doctor if they missed, so I know my husband feigned feeling well to get out of getting a shot or something at the doctor's. I've had to go get my DD from the babysitter's when she starts getting a fever or a cough or something. I'd much rather someone pick up their sick kid from school than leave them there like my mother did. I remember once calling because I had horrid nausea and was running a fever and my mom told me to tough it out and hung up the phone. We didn't miss school for anything. I'm not going to be that harsh on my DD, but if she's sick, she can stay home. If she has lady cramp problems like I do and she needs to come home, then I'll go get her. But I don't think sick kids need to be in school, even if they are 4 years old or 18 years old. They need to be home.
• United States
5 May 09
HI mystic, yeah, I agree... there's plenty of time to teach the virtue of 'tough it out.' I just don't think 3 or 4 years old is the time to teach it. When I was growing up, I hardly ever missed school - because I loved school. I never wanted to stay home... so when I went to my mom and asked to stay home because I wasn't feeling well, she KNEW I wasn't well because I never wanted to miss school! Later when I grew up, I was given a little more freedom to decide when/if I stayed home. But only because I was a great student and didn't abuse the privilege... If my work was done, if my grades were good, my parents didn't have an issue with me taking a 'sanity' day once in a while...
1 person likes this
@jessi0887 (2794)
• United States
5 May 09
You sure its not the other way around. I thought if a child has diarrhea with no fever and/or vomiting then they are okay. My son use to get diarrhea alot before we diagnosed him with food allergies. The daycare said it was fine as long as he wasn't running a fever and/or vomiting. Of course I did tell them though if he had diarrhea excessively to call me no matter what. Still that sounds ridiculous to allow kids that are sick to come around those who are well. You dont have any other options?
• United States
5 May 09
Hi jessi, No, his school handbook says either of those three things, or a combination of the three, are the only acceptable excuses for using sick days... I can understand why they wouldn't want a child with diarrhea in school, esp. if the child is still in diapers... It's disruptive, accidents, etc... Options? Like another school? No, it's the only school in our city that takes 3 year olds for speech... it was an EI thing. Otherwise I would have had to wait until he was 4 to get him in and I really didn't want to break up his progress because he was doing so well... I've already started checking out private schools in the area for next year... Thank you for your response!
@marcialoyd (1174)
• United States
6 May 09
That is just plain crazy. I would never send my kid to school sick and I wouldn't appreciate another parent sending their kid to school sick and exposing my child to illness. These people are off their rockers.