Caring for Our Children (CFOC)

Chapter 3: Health Promotion and Protection

3.6 Management of Illness

3.6.4 Reporting Illness and Death Procedure for Parent/Guardian Notification About Exposure of Children to Infectious Disease

Caregivers/teachers should work collaboratively with local and state health authorities to notify parents/guardians about potential or confirmed exposures of their child to a infectious disease. Notification should include the following information:

  1. The names, both the common and the medical name, of the diagnosed disease to which the child was exposed, whether there is one case or an outbreak, and the nature of the exposure (such as a child or staff member in a shared room or facility);
  2. Signs and symptoms of the disease for which the parent/guardian should observe;
  3. Mode of transmission of the disease;
  4. Period of communicability and how long to watch for signs and symptoms of the disease;
  5. Disease-prevention measures recommended by the health department (if appropriate);
  6. Control measures implemented at the facility;
  7. Pictures of skin lesions or skin condition may be helpful to parents/guardians (i.e., chicken pox, spots on tonsils, etc.)

The notice should not identify the child who has the infectious disease.

Effective control and prevention of infectious diseases in child care depends on affirmative relationships between parents/guardians, caregivers/teachers, public health authorities, and primary care providers.
The child care health consultant can locate appropriate photographs of conditions for parent/guardian information use. Resources for fact sheets and photographs include the current edition of Managing Infectious Diseases in Child Care and Schools (1) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Website on conditions and diseases. For a sample letter to parents notifying them of illness of their child or other enrolled children, see Healthy Young Children, available from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) at
Center, Early Head Start, Head Start, Large Family Child Care Home, Small Family Child Care Home
RELATED STANDARDS Infectious Disease Outbreak Control
  1. Aronson, S. S., T. R. Shope, eds. 2017. Managing infectious diseases in child care and schools: A quick reference guide, 4th Edition. Elk Grove Village, IL: American Academy of Pediatrics.