Children and teens have vulnerable immune systems. Given the amount of time they spend at school every year, it is so important to keep students healthy and the environment around them as clean as can be.

We all know how quickly sickness spreads around the school. If a student, faculty member or staff member is sick, make sure to keep them home or send them home if they have certain illnesses or symptoms like strep throat, influenza or chicken pox. Refer to these illness exclusion recommendations for your school.

Learn More About Exclusions

Hand Washing Resources

We all know how important it is to wash your hands after using the bathroom. Children are forgetful. Help them remember to wash their hands before returning to class with these posters.

School Height & Weight Project

The Department of Health has administered the School Height & Weight project since 1998. This voluntary program tracks childhood obesity in South Dakota. Information about the survey and past year’s reports can be found below.

See Past Reports

Facts for Schools About Enterovirus D68

  • Enteroviruses are very common viruses; there are more than 100 different types.
  • Enterovirus D68 infections are less common than infections with other Enteroviruses.
  • Infants, children, and teenagers are more likely than adults to get infected with Enteroviruses and become sick.

  • Runny nose, sore throat, cough, wheezing, rash, and a fever.
  • Some individuals, especially those with underlying conditions, such as asthma or a weakened immune system, may experience more severe complications including difficulty breathing.
  • Less often, Enteroviruses can cause pneumonia, meningitis (swelling of the tissue covering the brain and spinal cord), or encephalitis (swelling of the brain).
  • If a person has severe symptoms, contact a healthcare provider.

  • Enterovirus D68 is found in saliva, nasal mucus, or sputum.
  • Like a cold or influenza, Enterovirus D68 spreads from person to person when an infected person coughs, sneezes or touches surfaces.

  • There are no vaccines for preventing Enterovirus D68 infections.
  • You can help protect yourself from respiratory illnesses by following these steps:
    • Wash hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds.
    • Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth.
    • Avoid kissing, hugging, and sharing cups or eating utensils with people who are sick.
    • Use standard disinfection procedures for surfaces, such as toys and doorknobs.
  • Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are not effective against Enteroviruses, which is why hand washing is so important.
  • As always, remind parents to keep kids home when they are sick.

Learn more from the CDC.

Additional Resources