- Sarah Prendergast, BSN, RN
Welcome to the Maple Lane Elementary School
Welcome back to another great year at Maple Lane. I am look forward to another year with students and families!!
As always please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns for this school year. Please remember to get your child's green emergency card handed back in right away. It is extremely important that emergency cards are turned in as soon as possible. They provide updated contact information, medical conditions, and important allergy information.
Please make sure to get all of your child's updated health records including completed vaccines, physicals, Tb assessments, and lead (KN only) into the nurse's office as soon as possible. This is extremely important in order to avoid exclusion, and is required by the state of Delaware.
If your child will need to take any medications at school this year please make sure to bring them in the original prescription bottles. A new medication permission form will need to be filled out for each medication. Please remember that all controlled substance medications MUST be brought in by a parent/guardian. These medications should NOT be carried to school by students.
Please remember to bring in student inhalers or other respiratory medications that your child may need as soon as possible to prevent any emergencies. The colder months can trigger asthma related episodes, which makes it extremely important to make sure we have the student's mediation available. We do go out for recess in both hot and cold weather. If you feel your child cannot tolerate the weather on a specific day due to an existing medical condition, please let me know. Also, remember to bring in an updated emergency action plan for any emergency medications. Your doctor will have a copy of this on file.
The cold weather has made it's arrival. This means that Flu season is underway. Flu vaccines can be given at your doctor's office, or even many of our local pharmacies. Please check with your doctor about getting your Flu shot, or feel free to contact me with any questions.
Once again, some basic tips to help prevent the spread of illness are:
-frequent hand washing
-making sure to cover our mouths when sneezing or coughing
-frequently sanitizing desks, door knobs, and other frequently touched surfaces
-staying home from school or work if you are sick.
It is already that time of year for our vision and hearing screenings to begin. Each school year all kindergarten, second graders, and 4th graders are screened for vision and hearing. Please feel free to contact me if you having any concerns regarding your child's vision/hearing. Once the screenings are completed, if there is a concern regarding your child's vision/hearing a referral letter will be sent home. Please make sure to follow up with me after all referrals have been addressed or completed.
Over the next couple weeks I will be starting postural/gait screenings on 5th grade students. This is a screening of your child's back to ensure that that are growing appropriately for their age. A physical therapist from A.I. Dupont Hospital for Children will come out in the next few months to evaluate any students that were referred based off of their initial screening here at school. You will receive a letter notifying you of any further recommendations/referrals. Please make sure that your child is dressing appropriately for the screening process. Avoid extra baggy/loose fitting clothes. If they are wearing a sweatshirt/sweater, please make sure they have a shirt on underneath. Please feel free to contact me with any questions.
Vision To Learn Program
The Vision To Learn Program has been partnering with the Brandywine School District and Maple Lane for the last 2 years. The VTL program is a non-profit organization that provides free vision screenings to our school. These screenings are in addition to the routine yearly screenings. If glasses are determined to be needed for your child, they will be provided completely free of cost. They provide an exam van and ophthalmologist that will come out to our school grounds. It is truly an amazing program. Please contact me if you are interested for your child. Over the next few weeks, look for me to be sending information home about the VTL program along with permission forms.
Tick Bite Awareness and First Aid
Ticks and the diseases that they carry are an on going health concern. It is very important to make sure to check the body for any Ticks after being outside. Kids health has some great tick education, and first aid tips. Follow the attached link for more information:
SEASONAL ALLERGY TIPS
If you know your child has severe seasonal allergies and needs to take medication, please try to give it to them at home to avoid worsening of symptoms at school. Seasonal allergy symptoms can include red/itchy eyes, watering of eyes, eye swelling, sore throat, runny noses, and sneezing. There are many over the counter medications for children that can help with these symptoms. Children's strength Benadryl is a common one, and it is available in a non-drowsy formula. Your doctor can help you with a good medication option for your child also. Often times, a doctor may also recommend using allergy relief eye drops to help with eye itching/irritation. It is important to try to avoid allergy triggers by following some basic steps: keeping windows closed, bathing after being outside, avoid lying in bed after being outside for long periods to avoid spread of pollen or grass spores contaminating your sheets, washing clothes and sheets often to get rid of allergens, and using allergy relief medications such as antihistamines or other medications that may be recommended by your doctor. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the nurse's office!
Concussions are a growing source of concern to parents and health care providers. They impact your child's ability to learn, study, and carry on with activities of every day life. If your child has an injury that resulted in a diagnosis of a concussion, please let me know. I will be disseminating information to the school staff about the injury and whatever limitations the health care provider has indicated, as well as following up with the provider with any questions that may arise.
Nemours.org also has a lot of helpful information.
*Please remember, that if your child has been diagnosed with a concussion by their doctor, we will need all doctor's notes, medical documentation with the doctor's orders/restrictions/accommodations, and documentation for when the student has been cleared to return to regular activities.
Student Health Forms
The link below will direct you to the student health forms that are required for students in Pre-K- Gr 6. (Physical Examination form and Student Health History form). To obtain a printable version of the forms, please click the link below.
The U.S. Government has put up a new web site about vaccines, http://vaccines.gov/. It has great information about vaccines, how they work, what diseases they prevent and provides links to other vaccine sites. Remember to get yourself and older family members who have contact with infants vaccinated against pertussis (whooping cough). Babies don't have enough vaccine on board to prevent them from getting whooping cough. Adults don't get the disease as severely as the babies, and may unknowingly pass this potentially deadly disease to the infant.
Nurses in the Brandywine School District are no longer excluding or checking student's heads routinely for lice. We do not send letters home advising parents that other students have had them as this would be in direct violation of privacy laws. Lice are typically NOT passed on in school. It takes direct head to head contact, and this typically does not occur in the school setting. We are basing our guidelines on objective evidence based practices. We have taken our guidelines from the Harvard School of Public Health and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Please call me with any questions or issues. I have provided some links for your review that provided some great education on the topic.
Change of Clothing
Please make sure that you are sending in a change of clothing for your child. Regardless of the age group, all types of accidents happen. I am almost out of pants for all age groups. This means that if your child has an accident we will have to call home. Any clothing donations would be much appreciated.
Important Reminders Regarding illness
Please make sure your child is fever free without the use of medication for 24 hours before sending them back to school after an illness. If they are ill, please keep them home to protect both the other students and your child.
Remind your child when and how to wash their hands. The best defense against illness is to wash hands and surfaces as often as possible. Remind your children to wash their hands after blowing their noses, and don't forget to wipe down door handles and other surfaces when you clean.
Any medications that need to given at school must be in the original container with the prescription label. An additional medication permission form will need to be filled out and signed by a guardian. These forms are located in the nurse's office.
Please call or email me anytime with any questions or concerns you may have.
E mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Take some time to visit one of my favorite websites:
They have a lot of wonderful information on children's health!