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All parents must complete a Medical Permission Form for each student prior to the start of the school year.


Student Health - Medications, Illnesses, Allergies, & More

May 08, 2024

The school maintains a sick room staffed by a nurse each day from 8:00 - 3:10. Sick or injured students should be referred to the school nurse. The nurse plans programs to educate employees and students about health, safety and related issues, policies and procedures. The school nurse is the only employee who would ever administer medication to a student. Teachers and administrators receive CPR training and other training as may be appropriate.

Immunization Requirements

PDS follows the Tennessee Department of Health Rules for Immunization. All students must have an up-to-date Tennessee Certificate of Immunization to attend school or a medical or religious exemption to vaccination form signed by the parents.

The state’s immunization schedule follows the current schedule published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).

This link provides all of the detail on immunization requirements:


Please either upload a scanned copy of your son's immunization record when you complete the online medical permission form.

Instructions for Scanning : iOS | Android

If you have questions about immunization, please contact the school nurse:
Alice Ball, RN, BSN

Your Son's Physical
A physical is just a note from your pediatrician that your son had a well-child checkup and that he is approved for all activities and sports without restriction. Any form is accepted or your pediatrician can date and check the box on the immunization form indiciating that your child was seen.
Prescription Medications

In order to better serve PDS students who must take medications during the school day, please assist us by following these guidelines which are recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on School Health and the Memphis and Shelby County Health Department:

Prescription Medications

  1. Parents must bring the medication to the office. Children are not allowed to transport medication. The medication should be provided to the school in the original container labeled by the pharmacist. This label must include patient’s name, name of the drug, dosage, how often taken and reason for the medication. This label will serve as the doctor’s order. The medication will be kept in a locked space in the school nurse office. The school nurse will keep a record (date and time) of all medication administered.
  2. If a child is given a prescription to be taken “three times daily,” it is recommended that the parent give it to him before he comes to school, after going home from school, and before bedtime. The school will give medication only when dispensing is ordered more often or with lunch.
  3. It is the responsibility of the parents to get refills when the bottle is sent home.
  4. Please complete the Prescription Medication Authorization Form
Over-the-Counter Medications

In order to better serve PDS students who must take medications during the school day, please assist us by following these guidelines which are recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on School Health and the Memphis and Shelby County Health Department:

PDS provides some over-the-counter medications, such as brand or generic versions of Advil, Tylenol, Benadryl, Tums and topical (skin) medications. The student will not be given any of these medications unless a permission form is filled out and on file in the nurses’ office.

A separate form is required for parent-provided oral, over-the-counter medications such as Mucinex, cough syrup and allergy medications like Zyrtec. If you would like your son to be given any of these medications you must bring the medication in the original bottle labeled with the student’s name and grade along with a completed permission form. This form may be picked up in the nurses’ office or completed online.

To ensure the safety and well-being of all PDS students, parents are requested to follow these important guidelines. If you have any questions or concerns regarding circumstances, please feel free to call the school nurse at 901–842–4627.

When To Stay Home

Please help us decrease the spread of illness at school by keeping your son at home when he is sick. Common illnesses such as the common cold, strep throat, flu, covid, pink eye, lice, hand-foot & mouth, and stomach bug all spready through contact with an infected person.

Please follow these guidelines for attending school:

  • Nausea/Vomiting/Diarrhea
    Your son must be N/V/D-free for 24 hours before returning. If your son has N/V/D while at school, he will be sent home and cannot return the next day. The 24-hour clock starts with the last instance of N/V/D.
  • Fever
    Your son must be fever-free for 24 hours without using fever-suppressing medications. If using these medications (Advil, Tylenol etc), the 24-hour clock begins after the last dose of Advil/Tylenol has worn off (4-6 hours after giving the dose). The 24-hour fever-free rule applies regardless of the source of the fever. If your son has a fever at school, he will be sent home and cannot return the next day.
  • Hand Foot & Mouth Disease
    Your son’s blisters/lesions should not be open or draining and he should not be drooling. He must be fever-free for 24 hours and have symptom improvement/no new spread of rash for 24 hours before returning to school.
  • Lice
    Your son needs to be lice & nit (egg) free and needs to be checked by the school nurse before returning. There are multiple approaches to eliminate lice—prescription shampoo, over-the-counter shampoo, Robi Comb, Lice Doctors, Lice Clinic.
  • Respiratory Illnesses
    Common cold, covid, flu, sinus infection, strep throat, etc. Whether viral or bacterial, these spread by airborne droplets from talking, sneezing, coughing etc. Please keep your son at home if he has these symptoms and take him to his pediatrician for treatment. If a student reports a positive strep test, he will need to complete 24 hours of antibiotics before returning.
  • Pink Eye

    If your son wakes up with his eyelashes crusty and the white areas of his eyes are pink-red and glassy or watery, he likely has pink eye. Your son will need 24 hours of prescription antibiotic eyedrops before returning to school. He also needs symptom improvement — his eyes aren’t crusty, itchy, weepy or red.

Additional Early Childhood Guidelines

  • Ear Infections
    Ear infections aren’t contagious, but if your son has a fever with his ear infection, he cannot attend school due to the fever rule. If your son is in pain and fussy, please keep him at home until he feels better and 24 hours after his first dose of antibiotics.
  • Impetigo
    Impetigo is a bacterial skin infection caused by either Strep-A or Staph-A and is highly contagious. It must be treated either by prescription antibiotic ointment or oral antibiotics or a combination of both. If the infection is oozing and crusty, your son cannot attend school because contact with the fluid is how it spreads. He needs to be treated for at least 24-hours before he returns and sores should be covered by clothing or bandaids.

Remember that if your son is having a rough morning at home, that behavior usually extends into his school day as well. Keep him at home if he feels bad because he needs the rest.

Please let your teachers know if your son is sick. If he saw his pediatrician or other doctor and is returning to school, please bring a doctor’s note.

Food Allergies

PDS recognizes that food allergies can cause serious life threatening conditions for some students. In an effort to keep our students safe so that they can focus on learning and development, PDS will strive to limit those foods that have been determined to cause allergic reactions in students, acknowledging that we cannot guarantee an allergen free environment.

Peanuts and tree nuts can be an especially difficult food to limit; however, PDS will strive to be nut sensitive.

PDS will strive to be nut free in the cafeteria programs and at all receptions, programs, or special events during normal school hours. Foods that are brought to school by families including those served at receptions, fundraisers, holiday parties, birthday celebrations or food that is to be shared with other students must be from the PDS pre-approved food list. Due to the risk of cross-contamination, foods prepared at home may not be brought to school for the purpose of serving other students. Individual students, faculty, and staff may bring nuts and nut products for lunch and snacks for their individual consumption only.

Each student with a diagnosed food allergy is strongly encouraged to have a comprehensive Individualized Health Plan developed to meet his health needs, including an Action Plan to treat possible reactions to food allergies.

The following procedures are based on The Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network’s School Guidelines for Managing Students with Food Allergies 2009.

Food Allergy Protocols and Procedures

The Family’s Responsibility
  1. Notify the school of the student’s allergies on the Health Form at the beginning of each year or if the allergy is diagnosed during the academic year, notify the school in writing as soon as possible.
  2. Work with the student’s physician and, to the extent necessary, the School Nurse, to develop an Individualized Health Plan that accommodates the student’s needs throughout the school including in the classroom, in the cafeteria, in after-care programs, and during school-sponsored activities.
  3. Work with the student’s physician and, to the extent necessary, the School Nurse, to develop a Food Allergy Action Plan.
  4. Provide written medical documentation, instructions and medications as directed by a physician, using the Food Allergy Action Plan as a guide. Include a current photo of the child for the Action Plan.
  5. Provide properly labeled medications and replace medications after use or upon expiration.
  6. Educate the student in the self-management of his food allergy including:
    • safe and unsafe foods
    • strategies for avoiding exposure to unsafe foods
    • symptoms of allergic reactions
    • how and when to tell an adult about an allergy-related problem
    • how to read food labels (age appropriate)
  7. Review policies/procedures with the student’s physician and the student (age appropriate) after a reaction has occurred.
  8. Provide current emergency contact information, and update all contact information throughout the school year if there are changes in phone numbers or address.
  9. Separated or divorced parents must include applicable provisions of their Permanent Parenting Plan Order in the development of the Food Allergy Action Plan.
The School's Responsibility
  1. The School Nurse and Division Head will review health records submitted by parents and physicians.
  2. The School will ask students, families, faculty and staff to provide only non-nut food options from the PDS pre-approved list when bringing special treats or food for receptions, birthdays, or special events. Due to the risk of cross-contamination, homemade goods should not be brought or served.
  3. The cafeteria manager will review all foods purchased for the cafeteria to ensure they are tree nut and peanut free and will check all off-site prepared foods served in the cafeteria to make sure it is tree nut and peanut free.
  4. Faculty who regularly interact with the students will be trained by the School Nurse to understand food allergies, recognize symptoms, and know what to do in an emergency.
  5. The School Nurse will store the medications appropriately and will be sure that an emergency kit is available that contains a physician’s standing order for epinephrine. Medications will be kept in an easily accessible secure location central to designated school personnel, not in locked cupboards or drawers. A student will be allowed to carry his own epinephrine, if age appropriate, after approval from the student’s physician, parent and school nurse, and allowed by state or local regulations.
  6. Following an allergic reaction, the School Nurse will review the Food Allergy Action Plan with the parents and student (age appropriate), after a reaction has occurred.
  7. The School Nurse and/or the Faculty will discuss field trips with the family of the food-allergic student to decide appropriate strategies for managing the food allergy while the student is away from campus. Students and Faculty will be instructed not to bring snacks or treats that contain tree nuts or peanuts.
The Student's Responsibility
  1. Will not trade or share food with others.
  2. Will not eat anything with unknown ingredients or known to contain any allergen.
  3. Will be proactive in the care and management of his food allergies and reactions based on his developmental level.
  4. If the student is allowed to carry medications on his person for the treatment of control of an allergic reaction, he will not share, show or allow others to handle medications.
  5. Will notify an adult immediately if he eats something containing the food to which he is allergic.
Peanut And Tree Nut-Free Safe Snack List

Tree nuts include almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, chestnuts, filberts, hazelnuts, hickory nuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, pistachios, and walnuts.

Ingredients and manufacturing processes change frequently.



  • AirHeads
  • Andes Mints
  • Blow Pops
  • Dots
  • Dum-Dum Lollipops
  • Fruit by the Foot- Betty Crocker
  • Fruit Roll-ups- Betty Crocker
  • Fruit Gushers- Betty Crocker
  • Gobstoppers
  • Jolly Ranchers- hardcandy & gummies
  • Junior Mints
  • Laffy Taffy
  • Lifesavers/Lifesaver gummies
  • Mike & Ike- all flavors
  • Milk Duds
  • Nerds & Nerd Ropes
  • Pez
  • Pixie Sticks
  • Pop Rocks
  • Ring Pop
  • Rolo
  • Runts
  • Skittles- All Varieties
  • Smarties
  • Sour Patch Kids
  • Sour Punch Straws
  • Spree
  • Starburst
  • SweetTarts
  • Swedish Fish
  • Sugar Babies & Sugar Daddies
  • Tootsie Rolls/Tootsie Pops
  • Twizzlers- All wrapped varieties
  • Whoppers- ORIGINAL ONLY
  • York Peppermint Patties


  • Keebler Deluxe Grahams- Fudge Covered
  • Keebler Fudge Stripes
  • Keebler Vanilla Wafers
  • Kellogg’s Rice Krispie Treats
  • LoftHouse Frosted Sugar Cookies
  • Nabisco Nilla Wafers
  • Newtons- Original Fig, Fat Free, Whole Grain, Strawberry & Raspberry
  • Oreos- Blue original packing & Golden yellow Packaging- Read Label
  • Ricki’s Cookie Corner- No nut Chocolate Chip Sticks -TELL THEM IT’S FOR NUT-FREE SCHOOL


  • Doritos
  • Santitas
  • Sun Chips
  • Tostitos
  • Lay’s Potato Chips- all
  • Pringles- all
  • Ruffles Potato Chips
  • Rold Gold Pretzels
  • Cheetos
  • Pirate’s Booty
  • Fritos-all

Crackers/Graham Crackers

  • Cheez-It
  • Goldfish
  • Keebler Club
  • Keebler Graham Crackers
  • Nabisco Grahams- Original & Honey Maid
  • Nabisco Animal Crackers
  • Nabisco Saltines
  • Teddy Grahams- Cinnamon, Honey, Chocolate, Chocolatey Chip & Mini


  • Fresh Fruit Tray
  • Vegetable Tray
  • Gibson’s Donuts – plain glazed donuts ONLY
  • Sargento String Cheese
  • Kraft Cheese Cubes
  • Pancho’s Cheese Dip
  • French Onion Dip
  • Domino’s Pizza
  • Papa John’s Pizza
  • Kraft Jet Puffed Marshmallows
  • Ghirardelli Chocolate Chips
  • Hershey’s Chocolate Chips
  • Pop Secret Popcorn
  • Orville Redenbacher Popcorn

The top 8 allergens are required to be on food labels: Milk, Eggs, Peanuts, Tree Nuts, Wheat, Fish, Shellfish, Soybeans. Tree nuts are almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, pecans, Brazil nuts, pistachios, and walnuts.

Types of labels you may see for allergens:
Contains peanuts.
May contain peanuts.
Produced in a facility that also processes peanuts in another product.

“May contain” and “produced in a facility” implies the potential for cross-contamination and those products should be avoided.

For more information on medical issues contact Alice Ball.