Illness and Communicable Disease

  • Illness Guidelines

    A child should not come to school if they have or have had:

    • A fever of 100 degrees F (orally) or higher in the past 24 hours WITHOUT fever-reducing medication
    • Vomiting or recurring bouts of diarrhea in the past 24 hours
    • An unexplained rash (check with your healthcare provider before sending the student to school).


    Saint Paul Public Schools takes guidance from Saint Paul- Ramsey County Public Health, Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and follows guidelines developed by the epidemiologists at Hennepin County Community Health Department when deciding if a student should be sent home or kept home from school. The Hennepin County Infectious Diseases in Childcare Settings and Schools Manual informs administrators, childcare providers, caregivers, parents and guardians, and school health staff about specific infectious disease problems they may encounter in the childcare setting or in schools. This manual is designed to provide specific disease prevention and control guidelines which are consistent with the national standards put forth by the American Public Health Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics.

    If your child becomes ill while at school, staff will attempt to notify you. Please keep contact numbers up-to-date in case school needs to reach you.

    Influenza (Flu)

    The flu is a respiratory disease caused by a virus that attacks the nose, throat, and lungs. Illness is usually mild or moderate, not requiring hospitalization. However, at times the flu can be severe. It is not the same as the "stomach flu."

    Flu symptoms include fever, dry cough, sore throat, headache, extreme tiredness, and body aches. These symptoms usually begin suddenly and might be severe enough to stop your daily activities.

    The first and most important step in preventing flu is to get a flu vaccine each year. Flu vaccine has been shown to reduce flu related illnesses and the risk of serious flu complications that can result in hospitalization or even death. Get vaccinated.

    • Stay home when you are sick
    • Avoid being around others who are sick.
    • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, or cough or sneeze into your sleeve.
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water.
    • Do not share drinking cups and straws.
    • Frequently clean commonly touched surfaces (door knobs, refrigerator handles, phones, water faucets).

    Additional Information can be found at:

    Saint Paul - Ramsey County Public Health: https://www.ramseycounty.us/residents/health-medical/current-health-issues

    Minnesota Department of Health: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/flu/basics/fluparent.html

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: https://www.cdc.gov/flu/index.htm                                                                                

    Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

    COVID-19 is a respiratory illness caused by a new virus, and we are learning more about it every day. Symptoms of COVID-19 include mild to severe respiratory illness along with:

    • Fever
    • Cough
    • Shortness of breath

    Questions about COVID-19? Call the MDH COVID-19 Hotline at 651-201-3920, every day from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. 

    Additional Information can be found at:

    Saint Paul Public Schools: https://www.spps.org/Page/38688

    Saint Paul - Ramsey County Public Health: https://www.ramseycounty.us/residents/health-medical/current-health-issues/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19

    Minnesota Department of Health: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html