Illness and Absence


If your child is ill you should telephone the school office on 0208 951 5380 or send an email to by 9:30am. If you have not contacted the school, a member of staff will telephone you to find out where your child is. This is for your child’s safety and to ensure that we know they are safely with you, so please be understanding if you receive a call from us.

If you are not sure how long your child should be off school, the table below will provide a guide for you. For more information on an illness or condition and the latest up-to-date guidance, please visit the NHS website.

Public Health England has issued winter-readiness information for schools which you may find useful.

If your child requires medication to be administered at school, you will need to fill out a parental consent form.


Recommended period to be kept away from school (once child is well)


Chickenpox Until all spots have crusted and formed a scab – usually five to seven days from onset of rash Chicken pox causes a rash of red, itchy spots that turn into fluid-filled blisters. They then crust over to form scabs, which eventually drop off.
Cold sores None Many healthy children and adults excrete this virus at some time without having a ‘sore’ (herpes simplex virus).
German measles Five days from onset of rash The child is most infectious before the diagnosis is made and most children should be immune to immunisation so that exclusion after the rash appears will prevent very few cases.
Hand, foot and mouth disease None Usually a mild disease not justifying time off school.
Impetigo 48 hours after treatment starts and/or until lesions are crusted or healed Antibiotic treatment by mouth may speed healing. If lesions can reliably be kept covered exclusion may be shortened.
Measles Five days from onset of rash Measles is now rare in the UK.
Molluscum contagiosum None A mild condition
Ringworm (Tinea) None Proper treatment by the GP is important. Scalp ringworm needs treatment with an antifungal by mouth.
Roseolla None A mild illness, usually caught from well persons
Scabies Until treated Outbreaks have occasionally occurred in schools and  nurseries.  Child can return as soon as  properly treated.  This should include  all the persons in the household.
Scarlet fever Five days from child commencing antibiotics Treatment recommended for the affected.
Slapped cheek or Fifth disease (Parvovirus) None Exclusion is Ineffective as nearly all transmission takes place before the child becomes unwell.
Warts and verrucae None Affected children may go swimming but verrucae should be covered.
Diarrhoea and/or vomiting (with or without a specified diagnosis) Until diarrhoea and vomiting has settled (neither for the previous 48 hours). Please check with the school before sending your child back. Usually there will be no specific diagnosis and for most conditions there is no specific treatment. A longer period of exclusion may be appropriate for children under age 5 and older children unable to maintain good personal hygiene.
E-coli and Haemolytic Uraemic Syndrome Depends on the type of E-coli seek FURTHER ADVICE from the CCDC
Giardiasis Until diarrhoea has settled for the previous 24 hours) There is a specific antibiotic treatment.
Salmonella Until diarrhoea and vomiting has settled (neither for the previous 24 hours) If the child is under five years or has difficulty in personal hygiene, seek advice from the Consultant in Communicable Disease Control.
Shigella (Bacillary dysentery) Until diarrhoea has settled (for the previous 24 hours) If the child is under five years or had difficulty in personal hygiene, seek advice from the Consultant in Communicable Disease Control.
Flu (Influenza) None Flu is most infectious just before and at the onset of symptoms.
Tuberculosis CCDC will advise Generally requires quite prolonged, close contact for spread on action.  Not usually spread from children.
Whooping cough (Pertussis) Five days from commencing antibiotic treatment Treatment (usually with erythromycin) is recommended  though non-infectious coughing may still continue for many weeks.
Conjunctivitis None If an outbreak occurs consult Consultant in Communicable Disease Control.
Glandular fever (infectious mononucleosis) None
Head lice (nits) None Treatment is recommended only in cases where live lice have definitely been seen.
Hepatitis A See comments There is no justification for exclusion of well older  children with good hygiene who will have been much more infectious prior to the  diagnosis. Exclusion is justified for five days from the onset of jaundice or stools going pale for the under fives  or where hygiene is poor.
Meningococcal    meningitis/septicaemia The CCDC will give specific advice on any action needed There is no reason to exclude from schools siblings and other close contacts of a case.
Meningitis not due to Meningococcalinfection None Once the child is well infection risk is minimal.
Mumps Five days from onset of swollen glands The child is most infectious before the diagnosis is made and most children should be immune due to immunisation.
Threadworms None Transmission is uncommon in schools but treatment is recommended for the child and family.
Tonsillitis None There are many causes, but most cases are due to viruses and do not need an antibiotic. For one cause, streptococcal infection, antibiotic treatment is recommended.
HIV/AIDS HIV is not infectious through casual contact. There have been no recorded cases of spread within a school or nursery.
Hepatitis B and C Although more infectious than HIV, hepatitis B and C have only rarely spread within a school setting.  Universal precautions will minimise possible danger or spread of both hepatitis B and C.