We have a full-time nurse on staff to serve the health needs of our school and students:

Betsy Howe, BSN RN is here daily, and is available via email for any health concerns or questions.

Email: Betsy.Howe@k12.sd.us

We conduct hearing, vision, and BMI screenings throughout the year at various grade levels, manage emergency response plans and rescue medications for those kids with chronic health conditions, mange daily medication administration needs, track student immunizations per state law, provide health education in the classrooms, and address various daily health concerns/needs within our student population. Screenings can be done on students or staff throughout the school year upon parent, self, or teacher request if suspecting a problem.


If your child has special health care needs, chronic health conditions, (asthma, allergies, seizures, other medical conditions) or needs rescue medication at school, please download the appropriate action plan form found on the left side of this page. We require a form to be on file at school in case of emergency and updated annually. This will allow us to provide a safe and stable environment for your child while at school.


Annual health records are part of the registration packet and handed out at the beginning of the school year. A new record needs to be completed, signed, and returned each school year and will be kept on file in the Health Office.


Students who are not up-to-date on their immunizations, will be not allowed to start school!


South Dakota Codified Law 13-28-7.1 requires students entering school or early childhood programs to present certification that they have been adequately immunized, according to the recommendations of the Department of Health. The law applies to all children entering school for the first time, including transfer students. Minimum immunization requirements are defined as:

  • Four or more doses of diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus containing vaccine, with at least one dose administered on or after age 4. Children 7 years and older needing the primary series only need three doses. The first dose of the primary series should be Tdap and the second and third doses should be Td, with at least 6 months between dose two and three. Children receiving six doses before age 4 do not require any additional doses for school requirements. The maximum a child should receive is six doses. If a child 7 years and older has an incomplete DTaP primary series, please contact the Department of Health Immunization Program (1-800-592-1861) for assistance.

  • Four or more doses of poliovirus vaccine, at least one dose on or after age 4. (Although not the recommended schedule - If a child has three doses of polio with the third dose administered on or after the age of 4 and at least 6 months after the second dose, no other doses are required.)

  • Two doses of a measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR) or submit serological evidence of immunity. Minimum age for the first dose is 12 months. Administer the second dose routinely at age 4 through 6 years. The second dose may be administered prior to age 4 provided at least 28 days have elapsed since the first dose.

  • Two doses of varicella vaccine. The minimum age for the first dose of varicella (chickenpox) vaccine is 12 months. History of disease is acceptable with parent/guardian signature. Administer the second dose routinely at age 4 through 6 years. The second dose may be administered prior to age 4 provided the minimum interval between the two doses is 3 months.


  1. One dose of Tdap is required for 6th grade entry IF the child is 11 years old. If the child is 10 years old when entering 6th grade they 45 days after their 11th birthday to receive the Tdap vaccination. If a child has a contraindication to Tdap, Td is acceptable. If a child receives a Tdap at age 7 or older, the dose does not need to be repeated. If a child 7 years and older has an incomplete DTaP primary series, please contact the Department of Health for assistance.

  2. One dose of meningococcal vaccine (MCV4) is required for 6th grade entry IF the child is 11 years old. If the child is 10 years old when entering 6th grade they 45 days after their 11th birthday to receive the meningococcal vaccine. If a child receives a dose at age 10 or after, the dose does not need to be repeated.

Haemophilus Influenzae BHepatitis AHepatitis B, HPV, and Pneumococcal vaccines are recommended but not required.

See the SD Department of Health website for more information on immunizations: Click Here


Students whose immunizations were administered outside of the state of South Dakota are required to fill out the SD Dept. of Health Certificate of Immunization and return it to the school. Also, if you are claiming exemption to immunizations, this form needs to be downloaded, signed, and returned to school prior to the student's first day of school. The form is located on the left side of this page and available for download.


Rules for school attendance: When ill, students should not be sent back to school until they are vomit, diarrhea, or fever-free (without medication) for 24 hours!

Chicken Pox - The first symptoms include a slight fever, and feeling tired and weak. An itchy blister-like rash soon follows. The blisters become dry, crust over, and form scabs within 4 to 5 days. They may appear on the scalp, armpits, trunk and even on the eyelids and in the mouth.Cases must be excluded from school until all scabs are dry and there have been no new pox for two days.

Pink Eye - Symptoms include white or yellowish discharge from one or both eyes, tears, pain, swelling and reddening of the eyelids, matted eyelids after sleep, and sensitivity to light. In severe cases, infiltration of the cornea may occur. The illness may last from 2 days to 2-3 weeks. Child should be excluded from school and not return until seen by a physician.

Common Cold - Common viral respiratory diseases can be characterized by fever and one or more cold symptoms such as chills, headache, body ache, weakness, and loss of appetite. Fevers greater than 100.4 should be excluded from school.

Ring Worm - Ringworm is a skin infection caused by a fungus that can affect the scalp, skin, fingers, toe nails or foot by direct skin-to-skin contact with infected people or pets. Ringworm of the body appears as flat, spreading ring-shaped areas. The edge is reddish and may be either dry and scaly or moist and crusted. As it spreads, the center area clears and appears normal. Child should be excluded from school unless child has physician's written permit for re-entering. Infected area should be covered when child is in school.

Impetigo - Symptoms are characterized by pustule (crusted sore with oozing) appearing on face, neck and hands – occasionally on body. Exclude from school until all areas are healed (usually about one week) or until child has a doctor's written statement for re-entry.

Scabies - Scabies is a fairly common infectious disease of the skin caused by a mite. Scabies mites are transferred by direct skin-to-skin contact. Indirect transfer from undergarments or bedclothes can occur only if these have been contaminated by infected people immediately beforehand. The most prominent symptom of scabies is intense itching particularly at night. The areas of the skin most affected by scabies include the webs and sides of the fingers, around the wrists, elbows and armpits, waist, thighs, genitalia, nipples, breasts and lower buttocks. Symptoms will appear from two to six weeks in people who have not previously been exposed to scabies infestations, and within one to four days after subsequent re-exposures. Exclude from school until treated. Itching may still be present, and avoid physical contact with infested individuals and their belongings, especially clothing and bedding.

Head Lice - Lice can be found anywhere on the scalp but are heaviest behind the ears and just above the hairline along the nape of the neck. Head lice attach their eggs (nits) to human hair. Head lice transmission can occur during direct contact with an infested individual. Head lice cannot jump or fly. Head to head contact or sharing items of clothing, combs, brushes, hats, or headphones may also result in transmission. Shared surfaces such as pillows, mattresses, sleeping bags, cars seats, or upholstered furniture may also transmit head lice. Usually, the first indication of an infestation is the itching on the head. Scratching at the back of the head or around the ears should lead to an examination for head louse eggs (nits) on the hair, and can be spread as long as lice or eggs remain alive on the infested person. Medicated shampoos or cream rinses containing pyrethrin (Rid), permethrin (Nix), lindane (Kwell), or malathion (Ovide) are used to kill lice. Always shampoo twice, 1 week apart to kill all live and newly hatched lice. Nightly comb-through and nit-picking are required to remove all nits from hair, and stop the live cycle. Thorough cleaning should be done of household items including: vacuuming upholstered furniture and carpet; laundering clothing and bedding in hot water (130° F for 20 minutes) and drying on hot cycle or dry cleaning to destroy lice and eggs; soaking combs and brushes in hot water (130° F for 10 minutes). Anything that cannot be laundered should be sealed in a plastic bag for two weeks. Student may return to school after being treated with medicated shampoo and through comb-through performed.

If live lice are found, students will be sent home to start treatment. If nits are found on the student during the school day, the student may remain in school and finish out the day. They are required to treat with medicated lice shampoo and do a thorough comb-through to eliminate nits that same day and/or evening and can return to school the following day if cleared by office staff. If the student does not treat with medicated lice shampoo and continues to present to school with evidence of live lice and nits, the school will send the student home to be treated. The school reserves the right to check the students in question for lice until cleared and send them home as needed to reduce transmission.

Parents of Pre-5th grade students will be notified of the presence of lice via letter from school nurse. Parents of Middle and High school students are notified via phone, email, or letter if their student has lice.

Influenza - Influenza is highly contagious and is easily transmitted through contact with droplets from the nose and throat of an infected person who is coughing and sneezing. Typical flu symptoms include headache, fever, chills, cough and body aches. Intestinal symptoms are uncommon, and symptoms can occur within 1 to 3 days after exposure to an infected person. Good handwashing and hygiene and getting a flu shot annually are ways to prevent or lessen the severity of the flu.

COVID-19 - See school district Covid Plan via the district website main page, COVID plan in the upper right corner.

**Common communicable disease guidelines and questions can be found on the South Dakota Department of Health website: https://doh.sd.gov/diseases/

**RECOMMENDATIONS for Temporary Exclusion from a SCHOOL SETTING: doh.sd.gov/media/dfwdwrfx/schoolexclusion.pdf