A nurse is on duty every school day to provide first aid and handle student health needs that occur during the school day.  

Some general questions asked of the nurse are: 

Q. When is my child too sick to go to school?  
A. Your child should stay home if he/she has: a fever (oral temperature of 100 degrees or more) diarrhea or vomiting undiagnosed rash or draining sores a stomach ache or headache that lasts or returns an ear ache, or discharge from the ear redness, swelling, or drainage of eye (possible pink eye) untreated head lice visible signs of a cold; sore throat with coughing a 24-hour wait for report of throat culture (if positive for strep throat; student must be treated at least 24 hours prior to return)  

Q. What happens when a student doesn’t feel well in school? 
A. Our policy regarding students who do not “feel well” is they may rest in the health office for 45 minutes. If they are not well enough to return to class after that time, the nurse will call the parent or guardian to pick up the student as soon as possible. It is essential that the person listed on the emergency card is someone who can pick your child up from school.  

Q. When my child returns to school after an illness, should he/she stay inside during recess time? 
A. A child should return to school when he/she is well. If the child is dressed appropriately, recess time (about 25 minutes) outside should be fine for the child.  

Q. When is my child well enough to return to school?
A. Our policy is that the child must be symptom free for a 24-hour period. Also, they must feel physically well enough to resume all normal, daily activities including outdoor recess. We wish to avoid constant reinfections and high absentee counts in our classrooms. So please refrain from sending your child back to school too soon. If “in doubt” – keep them home that extra day. 

Head Injuries/Concussions  

When a student sustains a head injury, it is important that the student, parent(s)/guardian(s), Upper School Director, faculty, nurse, and physician(s) all work together to help the student recover. Frequent communication is essential throughout the recovery process. The following is meant to be a guideline only, as each injury and recovery must ultimately be handled on an individual basis.    


  1. If a student sustains a head injury while participating in athletics/activities at MPA, the teacher/coach will assess the student and contact the school nurse, who will then contact the student’s parent(s)/guardian (s). The nurse may recommend that the student be seen by a physician.   
  2. If a student sustains a head injury outside of school, parents/guardians should make an appointment with a physician right away. 
  3. Regardless of where the concussion was sustained, to receive accommodations from the school, the Upper School Director must receive the following two items (available on the MPA website):   
    • Medical Release of Information: signed by parent(s)/guardian(s)  
    • Recommended Accommodations: filled out by physician (to be used if clinic does not have its own comprehensive form)  

Protocol for Students with Diagnosed Head Injuries:  

  1. When the student returns to school, he/she and a parent or guardian will meet with the Upper School Director or Director of Guidance to discuss the plan for accommodations. Accommodations will be made using the guidelines provided by the student’s physician to the extent possible.   
  2. The Upper School Director or Director of Guidance will communicate the accommodations to the student’s teachers.  
  3. The Upper School Director or Director of Guidance will continue to communicate frequently with the student and their parent(s)/ guardian(s) until the student is symptom free to provide support and adjust accommodations as needed.   
  4. The student must also meet with the school nurse once a week to track symptoms. The nurse may work with the student’s physician to determine when the student is symptom-free and accommodations will end.  


  1. If a student went to a doctor for the initial diagnosis, the school must receive a document from the student’s physician giving him/her clearance to play or practice before the athlete can return to the team. At that time, the athlete will begin a Return-to-Play Progression as established by the coach and/or physician.  
  2. A student must be symptom-free at rest before he/she can begin the Return-to-Play Progression. This progression will be established and monitored by the coach.   
  3. In accordance with Minnesota State High School League (MSHL) rules, an athlete must participate in a full contact, full practice before he/she can compete in a game/match.   
  4. When a student is cleared to Return-to-Play, no additional academic accommodations will be made; however, students may still need extended time for outstanding work, as determined by the Upper School Director or Director of Guidance, the student, parent(s)/guardian(s), and individual teachers. 

Last Updated: August 26, 2019