Going back to school in person this fall may seem a little scary as you will be sending your child back into the world that is healing from the COVID-19 pandemic. However, there are some precautions that you can take to make sure that your child will remain as safe and healthy as possible this school year.
Look for Signs of Illness
You should monitor your child every morning and check for any COVID-19-related symptoms. Symptoms you should watch out for include fever, nasal congestion, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, fatigue or nausea and vomiting. If your child exhibits any of these symptoms, it is a good idea to keep your child home that day. Some schools may also recommend daily temperature checks as part of a COVID-19 screening.
Make Sure Your Child Wears a Mask and Has Extras
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the World Health Organization (WHO), recommend that people wear cloth face coverings in public places especially when they cannot socially distance themselves. Schools are no exception to this. If your child’s school requires masks, provide your child with extras to ensure that they have a clean one every day, practice properly taking it on and off, instruct your child on the importance of not sharing or trading masks and talk to them about the importance of wearing one.
Keep Their Hands Clean
Practicing good handwashing techniques with your child is important for when they go back to school. You should explain to them the importance of washing their hands with warm soap and water for at least 20 seconds before/after they eat, after they cough or sneeze and after they use the bathroom. A good rule of thumb is to sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice.
Pack Hand Sanitizer
Sometimes hand washing is not an option. When that is the case, using hand sanitizer is the best option. You want to make sure that the sanitizer contains at least 60% alcohol in it and that your child goes to school with some hand sanitizer so they can keep their hands disinfected when they are unable to access the bathroom.
Practice Safe Distancing
Staying physically distant or socially distant is the practice of allowing enough space between individuals to reduce the spread of a disease. The CDC and WHO suggest that people remain six feet from one another. By informing your child to remain physically distant from other kids, when possible, it will reduce the chance of them contracting the disease and then bringing it home.
Sending your child back to school should not have to be a scary task, but an exciting one. By following these tips and taking the right precautions, you will help ensure your child remains healthy this school year.