The challenges of a new school year are just a couple of weeks away, and among them for working parents is juggling work with a sick child. But a Mayo Clinic infectious disease specialist said children with signs of illness should be kept home from school or daycare.

Mayo Clinic infectious disease specialist Dr. Pritish Tosh.

Dr. Pritish Tosh said, “Staying home or staying away from school until the fevers are gone for a good 24-hours is a good rule of thumb.”

In addition to spreading the illness to others, Tosh said a child is likely to recover faster from a cold or the flu with more rest.

Tosh said teaching kids proper hand washing and to cover sneezes is important – but not the most important advice. “These outbreaks occur often because kids are going to school while a little bit sick and then pass it on.”