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Wenonah School Health Office 

 

     Welcome to the Health Office webpage. My name is Linda June Collazo. Since 2017 I've had the pleasure of serving as Wenonah's School Nurse. The Wenonah commuity is stongly committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for all of its children and citizens. My goals are to promote health and safety in the school, and effectively manage any injury or illness that happens during the school day. We all know a healthy child in a heathy and caring environment is better able to participate and learn. Caring for your child's health during the school day is a responsibility taken very seriously at Wenonah School. 

 

      My qualifications include certifications in School Nursing, CPR, Advanced Cardiac Life Support, and Care Coordination and Transition Management. My undergraduate degrees are in Sociology, and Nursing. For over 20 years I worked in Acute Care settings as a Cardiac Nurse and Clinical Charge Nurse of an Intermediate Cardiac Care Unit in Center City Philadelphia. My experience also includes working with children with special needs in both home and school settings.  

 

        Contact me with any questions or concerns about your child. Please provide updated health information about your child, such as allergies or illnesses, as it arises. Feel free to reach out to me with any health related questions or concerns you may have regarding your child, the school environment, or the health of the community. I can be reached at 856-468-6000 Option #3, or lcollazo@wenonahschool.org

 

     Thank you for the opportunity to look after your child's health. Together, as a community, we will make Wenonah School a healthy environment for all children in Wenonah to learn, grow, and become the future leaders of our community.                                                

 

COVID-19 Considerations

     

      Please make sure your child is well rested, well hydrated, and fed before school starts to help avoid symptoms that are not illness related during school hours. Unfortunately, all symptoms will need to be considered for possible signs of infection during this stage of pandemic.

 

      It is strongly recommended you reach out to your child’s doctor if your child has a condition, such as seasonal allergies or chronic headaches, that may mimic symptoms associated with COVID-19. Your child’s doctor may recommend treatment, such as starting allergy medication before pollen levels rise, to help prevent symptom onset. It is our goal to treat your child effectively for their condition and not confuse any symptoms with possible COVID-19 infection unnecessarily. Consider asking your child’s doctor for a note with any diagnosis, such as seasonal allergies or chronic headaches, that may lead to symptoms easily mistaken for those of COVID-19, if you are concerned with this possibility. Understandably, we seek to identify, isolate, and root out any COVID-19 that may enter the school building before it can do any harm to our community.

 

     Thank you in advance for taking these steps to help us monitor health and keep everyone at Wenonah School and the surrounding community safe and healthy!

 

Attendance

 

     Please call or email before the start of the school day for any absence or lateness. At any time, you may leave a voicemail at 856-468-6000 Option #2, or email Mrs. Hallahan or me to report your child absent or late. Please leave a detailed list of symptoms and a brief description of why your child will be absent or late. The school takes its responsibility to care for your children during school hours very seriously. If we have not been notified, and your child is not at school on a school day, we will attempt to contact you. We will call and/ or email you, to make sure you are aware your child is not at school to ensure your child's safety. 

 

COVID-19 Exclutions

 

 From New Jersey guidance The Road Back: Restart and Recovery Plan for Education, from June 2020, 

https://www.nj.gov/education/reopening/NJDOETheRoadBack.pdf

 

and

New Jersey Department of Health COVID-19 Public Health Recommendations for Local Health Departments for K-12 Schools from September 8, 2020 https://www.state.nj.us/health/cd/documents/topics/NCOV/RecommendationsForLocalHealthDepts_K12Schools.pdf

 

 

Students or staff members sick with symptoms of COVID-19 should stay home from school.


Column A                                                                         Column B

Fever at or above 100.0                                                    Cough
Chills                                                                                Shortness of breath
Rigors (shaking)                                                               Difficulty breathing
Body or muscle aches                                                      New loss of smell
Headache                                                                          New loss of taste
Sore throat

Fatigue
Congestion or runny nose
Nausea or vomiting
Diarrhea

 

     Having either two or more symptoms from Column A, or any one symptom from Column B, is more concerning for COVID-19, and will require either:

  • 10 days absence from school;
  • a negative COVID-19 test result;
  • a doctor’s evaluation and note with an alternative diagnosis;

for return to school per NJ and GCDOH guidance.

 

A person ill with the above combination of symptoms without an alternative diagnosis or negative COVID-19 test result, and any person with a positive COVID-19 test result, will be excluded from school for at least 10 days from the onset of symptoms, and 24 hours fever free without the use of fever reducing medication, and with improving symptoms.

 

An asymptomatic person with a positive COVID-19 test result will be excluded from school for 10 days from the test date.

 

Please note, the above list of symptoms does not include all reasons warranting absence from school, nor all symptoms of COVID-19, but lists symptoms most frequently associated with COVID-19.

 

In addition, per NJ and GCDOH guidance, it is expected that students or staff members will be absent from school to follow recommended quarantine guidance due to:

 

     Below are a few guidelines that are helpful to follow when deciding if your child should stay home from school for other symptoms. Keep your child home from school for:

 

  • Eye(s) stuck closed with dried crust, or appears red with drainage (please have a doctor’s note stating the child is not contagious before returning),

  • Unusual rash, especially an extensive rash, or one with blisters (check with your doctor for cause and when your child is able to return to school),

  • Less than 24 hours on an antibiotic for treatment of strep throat or other contagious bacterial disease.

 

Check with your child’s doctor for suggestions on how to treat any of the above situations, or if you are concerned about your child’s health. Encouraging adequate hydration is always appropriate to support and maintain health. In this new age of contagious disease without treatment, we ask that you please err on the side of caution and keep your child home if you suspect they have a contagious illness. 

 

Immunizations

 

     Wenonah School follows the New Jersey requirements for immunizations. It is recommended all students have an annual influenza vaccination. Influenza vaccines are formulated and produced according to the current year’s influenza strains, and are usually available starting in late August. Whenever your child receives an immunization, please ask the health care provider for a copy of proof of immunization, and send a copy into the school for our records.

 

Below, see links to summaries of New Jersey immunization requirements.

 

Kindergarten through grade 12 Minimum Immunization Requirements NJ:

http://www.nj.gov/health/cd/documents/imm_requirements/k12-parents.pdf

 

Preschool Minimum Immunization Requirements NJ:

http://www.nj.gov/health/cd/documents/imm_requirements/cc_preschool_requirements-parents.pdf

 

Medications

 

     The school physician, Dr. Trotz, has given standing orders for acetaminophen (generic Tylenol) for mild pain, and calcium carbonate (generic Tums) for mild stomach discomfort. If your child may benefit from either of these medications during school hours, you may be contacted for a review of symptoms. You can request and consent to this medication being given to your child if you think it best. 

 

     Any other medicine your child may need during the school day must be ordered by your child's physician, and you must give written permission for administration of the medication by the school nurse. Wenonah School has a standard form for medication administration which may be used to meet these requirements. You may download a copy of the Wenonah School Medication Administration Authorization from the Parent page under Health on the Wenonah School website. Alternatively, contact my office for a copy. Any prescription medicine must be in the original pharmacy container with the prescribing label intact. Any over the counter medicine must be in the original container. All medicine, and completed Medication Administration Authorization Forms, must be brought into the school by an adult. 

 

     The school also has a standing order for cough drops from Dr. Trotz. Please do not send cough drops to school with your child, as these are for medicinal purposes and pose a choking hazard. In the rare case a cough drop is needed, I have them in stock and can give them in the health office.

 

     If you believe your child may need medicine during a scheduled field trip away from the school, and you will not be attending the field trip, please let the teacher and me know as soon as possible. The school may need to make special arrangements to have a substitute school nurse or appropriately trained staff available to attend the field trip with your child. 

 

Physicals

 

     The school requires every child to have a medical physical before admission to kindergarten or school. Documentation of the practitioner's physical findings, such as on the Universal Child Health Record, along with a Confidential Health History form completed by parents or guardians, must be sent  into the school nurse for our records. In addition, per New Jersey guidelines, it is recommended all students receive at least one more medical physical in either grades 4, 5, or 6.  Please contact the school for copies of the Universal Child Health Record or Confidential Health History forms, if you need them.

 

Wellness

 

     Some tips for promoting healthy development, optimal health for learning, and lifelong wellbeing:

 

Nutrition - Eat a healthy diet as a family. Avoid processed foods, added sugar, and unnecessary chemicals. Eat mostly vegetables, fruits, and unprocessed whole grains. Eating at least one meal as a family is a strong predictor of a healthy future. Cooking together is a great activity, too. Healthy fats (fish oil, Omega 3's, olive oil, coconut oil, and medium chain fatty acids) are good for you, and for brain and nervous system development. Breakfast truly is the most important meal of the day. Always eat something in the morning, and have your children eat before school. 

 

Exercise - Everyone performs better, feels happier, and is healthier, when exercise is part of their daily routine. Children should get at least 1 hour of physical activity daily. Exercise is linked to increased attention, calmer behavior, happier mood, higher test scores, increased comprehension, and better overall health. Promote daily exercise in any way possible, for everyone in your family. 

 

Sleep - Get plenty of sleep and ensure your child gets plenty of sleep, too. It is recommended that 5 to 12 year olds get between 10 and 13 hours of sleep a night. Turn down lights and limit screen time 2 hours before bedtime. Sleep in a dark, quiet room, without a television or screen on. This is even more important as your children approach their teen years. If they absolutely can not put away screens 2 hours before bedtime, use screen dimming settings on devices to reduce blue light.

 

Resiliency - If you want your children to grow up to be calm, competent, and confident, promote resilient behavior in them now. Fostering the ability of your children to problem solve, and navigate through disappointment and setbacks, will help them grow into adults able to shape their world and weather the rough times. Learning to "see the glass as half full", will help your children learn to see failure as an opportunity for growth. Mindfulness exercises, meditation, and yoga all promote calmness and resiliency. See the links provided for more information on resiliency. 

 

Avoid Illness - Follow basic safety rules, such as wearing helmets and seat belts, and avoiding danger. Promote hand washing, and covering sneezes or coughs (into an elbow or tissue, wash hands afterward). Proper hand washing consists of water, soap, friction on all surfaces for at least 20 seconds, rinse, and dry. To help promote 20 second scrubs, encourage your children to wash for as long as it takes to sing Happy Birthday two times through. Teach your children to avoid touching their faces as much as possible, since germs mostly enter and leave the body through the eyes, nose and mouth. Wash hands, or use hand sanitizer, before and after touching your face, before and after eating, when visibly dirty, after touching frequently handled objects, and after using the bathroom. Avoid "antibacterial" soaps and hand sanitizers to help reduce microbial resistance.