COVID-19 has successfully fostered an awareness of common sense in some people which is simply as incredible as it is marvellous. It’s no longer acceptable to send one’s children to school whilst they are clearly sick.
Prior to the pandemic I remember parents being able to still send their little ones to school based on whether their child felt up to it or not, without a care in the world or a single thought for the other individuals that their child could possibly infect.
Schools Are Sending Kids Home!
School is no longer a daycare service when it comes to palming children off because we have better things to do with our time other than to be tied down for the entire day by a little one who is unwell. And thankfully schools are actually sending children home who are visually sick.
It’s no longer a matter of supplying them with enough tissues to get them through their copious amount of phlegm and congestion throughout their school day. Even if the child is eagerly not wanting to miss out on any activities.
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It Builds Immunity, Doesn’t It?
Prior to COVID-19, many parents held the belief that their little one’s illnesses probably weren’t contagious, and even if they were – it built immunity which is a huge positive for everyone who encountered their sick child right!?
Unwell children were given medicine and sent to school to avoid boredom and ensure that the little one wasn’t missing out on anything.
What About Recovery?
Whatever happened to rest though? Making sure that a child had enough rest and recovery time even if they claimed to be well enough to still participate in community activities.
As their guardians, haven’t we always had it within our power to do what we believe is right for our child no matter what?
Admittedly, some schools didn’t make it very easy on the parents either if you decided to keep your children at home. There were guidelines as to how many days per term and per year that a child could have off and if you came anywhere near those maximum number of days you could be certain to receive an abrupt letter from the school setting up a meeting with the liaison officer if any more time were taken off.
Maybe Some Felt They Had No Choice
Perhaps this made some parents feel powerless. As though to avoid any unnecessary drama they had no choice but to send their sick kids to school against their better judgement. As a way of escaping negativity from the school and to avoid exceeding the set number of absent days.
Raising awareness about the more vulnerable members in our community I believe has been a vital lesson from the pandemic. Understanding that whilst exposure to some illnesses may bring greater immunity, for some people this could also have dire consequences. And there is no easy way of knowing who is and isn’t immunocompromised that an infectious child could come into contact with and potentially put at risk.
Putting Vulnerable At Risk!
Yes of course the elderly definitely fall into the category of people we need to extend greater care around- but what about those going through chemotherapy or people with underlying health conditions which render their immune systems weak who we can’t pick just by looking at them. Added to this they could be anyone, your little one’s teacher, the other child at the playground or any number of people you come into contact with at the shopping centre.
We Know When They Should Be Kept Home…
Understandably there will always be things like nagging post viral coughs which are unavoidable. However, under most circumstances, parents know when our little ones are genuinely unwell. We instinctively know when they need to rest and we need to be able to make the decision for them to rest and recover as opposed to encouraging them to battle on and infect everyone else in the process.
The decision to do what’s right for our children, for our family as well as for our community has always been in our power. Now it’s just a matter of relentlessly ensuring that we don’t forget it. Because it’s vital that we remember even ‘just a cold’ can have devastating effects on people with underlying health conditions that we know nothing about.
Know The Difference!
It’s alright to miss out on certain activities sometimes. Added to this there is always a chance of placing an already sick child at risk of contracting a secondary infection. There are times we need to battle on and times when we need to rest and recover- knowing the difference is vital. And it is definitely time that we start looking out for one another.
Are your schools sending kids home if they are sick? Tell us in the comments below.