Item Coversheet
No. 209
SECTION:  200 Pupils
TITLE:  209 Health Examinations/Screenings
ADOPTED: April 27, 1981
REVISED:  October 19, 2017

209 Health Examinations/Screenings


The Board of Education (“Board”) is committed to making every school a safe, welcoming, and healthy place. The purpose of this policy is to require students to receive health examinations and screenings in particular grades in an effort to protect the school community from the spread of communicable disease, and to provide that each student's health status is at an optimal level and that the learning potential of each student is not hindered by illness.


As required by In compliance with the Pennsylvania School Code of 1949 requires the School Reform Commission shall and Board-approved health and safety plans, the Board requires that dDistrict students submit to health and dental examinations, screenings, and health monitoring. in order to protect the school community from the spread of communicable disease, and to ensure that each student's health status is at an optimal level and that the learning potential of each student is not lessened by a remediable physical disability.[1][2][3][4][6][5]

Delegation of Responsibility

The Board directs the Superintendent or their designee, through the Office of Student Support Services, shall instruct all staff members to continually observe students for conditions that indicate health problems or disability and to promptly report such conditions to the certified school nurse.[2] The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that to provide notice at the beginning of the school year and as necessary is provided to all parents/guardians regarding the existence of and eligibility for the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) or other applicable health insurance program authorized by the Insurance Company Law of 1921. [9][6]

Mandatory Regulatory Procedures:

Each student shall provide written documentation of a comprehensive health examination, also known as a physical, conducted by a board certified physician, certified school nurse, or certified nurse practitioner upon original initial enrollment entry, in sixth grade, in ninth grade, and in eleventh grade. [1][11][16][2][3][4][5][7][8]


The dDistrict shall accept reports of privately conducted physical and dental examinations completed within one (1) year prior to a student’s entry into the grade where an exam is required. [4][5]


Students transferring from other school districts must provide a record of a comprehensive health examination within 10 days after the transfer regardless of their age or grade if health records, including documentation of health examinations and immunizations, are not made available by the original school. [7]


Each student shall provide written documentation of a comprehensive dental examination conducted by a private dentist or dental hygienist or a contracted school-based dentist authorized by the dDistrict upon original initial enrollment entry, in third grade, and in seventh grade. [16][17][2][3][4][5][8][9]


A program of dental education shall be provided to all students in pre-kindergarten through grade seven organized by the certified school nurse and provided by one of the District’s dental or university partners.


In lieu of the examinations conducted by school-based dental providers, any child of school age may furnish the local school officials with a dental report of examination made at their own expense by their family dentist. A dental examination conducted at the parents'/guardians' request and expense shall be accepted in lieu of the examinations conducted by school-based dental providers. The district shall accept reports of privately conducted physical and dental examinations completed within one (1) year prior to a student’s entry into the grade where an exam is required. [5]


The certified school nurse shall administer to each student vision screenings, hearing screenings, scoliosis screenings, and annual growth screenings. Height and weight measurements shall be used to calculate the student’s weight-for-height ratio. Tuberculosis screenings are required upon entry and 9th grade and shall be obtained through the student’s primary care physician. [1][2][3][4][5][6] 


A student who presents a statement signed by the parent/guardian that a medical health examination is contrary to his/her the student’s or parent’s/guardian’s religious beliefs shall be examined only when the Secretary of Health determines that facts exist indicating that certain conditions would increase the risk of communicable diseases the student presents a substantial menace to the health of others for those in contact with the student if the student is not examined for those conditions. [7][8][10][11]


Where it appears to school health officials or teachers that a student deviates from normal growth and development, or where school examinations reveal conditions requiring health or dental care, the parent/guardian shall be informed; and a recommendation shall be made that the parent/guardian consult a private physician or dentist. The parent/guardian shall be required to report to the school the action taken subsequent to such notification. If the parent/guardian fails to report the action taken, the certified school nurse or school physician shall coordinate a special medical health examination for the student. [1][2][3][4][6][9]


In the event that the parent/guardian objects to or refuses to obtain a regular or special health or dental examination or refuses to permit the child to be examined as arranged by the school nurse or school physician, the school nurse, in consultation with the school physician, shall determine whether the student appears to have unaddressed health conditions such that under the circumstances the refusal should be reported to the Pennsylvania Department of Health or other appropriate authorities.


Parents/guardians of students who are required to receive grade mandated physical and dental examinations or screenings shall be notified by the certified school nurse. The notice shall include the form(s) to be completed by the physician and/or dentist and to provide the documentation to the school principal or certified school nurse. Such a statement may also include notification that the student may be exempted from such examination or screening if it is contrary to the parent's/guardian's religious beliefs. [7][10][11][12][13][14]


The notice shall encourage the parent/guardian to have the examination or screening conducted by the student’s private physician or dentist at the parent's/guardian's expense to promote continuity of care. The notice shall include the date and location of any screenings to be performed by the school nurse and notice that the parents/guardians may attend. 


Where school health officials or staff have reasonable cause to suspect that a student may be the victim of child abuse, the school employee shall make a report of suspected child abuse in accordance with law and Board policy. [15][16]

Health Monitoring


The Board directs the Superintendent or their designee, through the Office of Student Support Services to monitor student health in accordance with applicable Board policy and any Board-approved health and safety plans. [17]

A student may request an alternative method of monitoring as a religious accommodation, and designated District staff shall assess and respond to such requests in accordance with applicable law, regulations, and Board policy. A request for an accommodation that would unreasonably impair safety or cause undue hardship will not be granted. [18]

A student with a health condition that may render a monitoring method ineffective should notify designated staff so that alternative or supplemental methods may be considered. [18][19]

Students who may be exhibiting symptoms that indicate health concerns shall be referred to the certified school nurse or designated staff for further assessment and response, in accordance with Board policy. [17]


Health Records


The district shall maintain for each student a A comprehensive health record shall be maintained in the Student Information System for each student enrolled in the District. The record shall which includes a record of immunizations and the results of required tests, measurements, screenings, regularly scheduled examinations and special examinations, and medical questionnaires. [1][2]


All health records shall be confidential and shall be disclosed only when necessary for the health of the student or when requested by the parent/guardian, in accordance with law and Board SRC policy. [13][14][20][21]


The District may disclose information from health records to appropriate parties in connection with an emergency when necessary to protect the health or safety of the student or other individuals, in accordance with applicable law and Board policy. [17][20][21][22][23][24][25]


In accordance with Policy 216 - Student Records and its administrative procedures, Designated district staff the District shall request from the transferring school the health records of students transferring into dDistrict schools and . Staff shall respond to such requests for the health records of students transferring from dDistrict schools to other schools. [13][20][21]


The dDistrict shall not destroy a student’s health record for a period of at least two (2) years after the student ceases to be enrolled, but may surrender the student’s health record portion thereof to the parent or guardian if the student does not re-enroll in an elementary or secondary school in Pennsylvania. [13][15][20][26]

Legal References:


  1. 24 P.S. 1402
  2. 24 P.S. 1403
  3. 22 PA Code 12.41
  4. 24 P.S. 1407
  5. 28 PA Code 23.1 et seq
  6. 24 P.S. 1406
  7. 28 PA Code 23.2
  8. 24 P.S. 1410
  9. 28 PA Code 23.3
  10. 24 P.S. 1419
  11. 28 PA Code 23.45
  12. 24 P.S. 1405
  13. 20 U.S.C. 1232h
  14. Pennsylvania Department of Health Mandated School Health Program Forms
  15. Policy 806 - Child Abuse
  16. 23 Pa. C.S.A. Sec. 6311
  17. Policy 203 - Immunizations and Communicable Diseases
  18. Policy 103 - Nondiscrimination in School and Classroom Practices
  19. Policy 103.1 - Nondiscrimination – Qualified Students With Disabilities/Protected Handicapped Students
  20. 24 P.S. 1409
  21. Policy. 216 - Student Records
  22. 20 U.S.C. Sec. 1232g
  23. 34 CFR Part 99
  24. Policy 805
  25. Policy 113.4
  26. Policy. 800 - Records Management


24 P.S. 1401

Related Information:
24 P.S. 1401-1419
22 PA Code 403.1
55 Pa. Code  § 3270.131
55 PA Code 3270.132
55 PA Code 3270.241
Philadelphia Code of Ordinances - Title 6, Section 6-209
Administrative Procedures: