Is my child too ill for school?

When your child is unwell, it can be hard deciding whether to keep them off school. These simple guidelines should help.

Not every illness needs to keep your child from school. If you keep your child away from school, be sure to inform school on the first day of their absence.

Use common sense when deciding whether or not your child is too ill to attend school. Ask yourself the following questions.

  • Is my child well enough to do the activities of the school day? If not, keep your child at home.
  • Does my child have a condition that could be passed on to other children or school staff? If so, keep your child at home.
  • Would I take a day off work if I had this condition? If so, keep your child at home.

Common conditions

  • If your child is ill, it's likely to be due to one of a few minor health conditions.
  • Whether you send your child to school will depend on how severe you think the illness is. Use this guidance to help you make that judgement.
  • Remember: if you're concerned about your child’s health, consult a health professional.

Please follow the link below for more details:

Is my child too ill for school?


Tell the school

It’s important to inform school if your child is going to be absent. On the first day of your child's illness, please telephone school to tell us that your child will be staying at home. School may ask about the nature of the illness and how long you expect the absence to last.

If it becomes clear that your child will be away for longer than expected, phone school as soon as possible to explain this. If you are not sure whether to keep your child at home please ask for advice from school.


Worried that your child is poorly?

Ask your GP for a copy of THE LITTLE ORANGE BOOK (Newcastle Gateshead CCG).

It's free and full of expert advice to help your children when they're poorly.


View or download by clicking on this link THE LITTLE ORANGE BOOK