Happy November from Nurse Carrie

The 2021-2022 school year has been underway for several weeks and I have enjoyed getting to know our new cohort of K – 5th graders.

I wanted to reach out to all Underwood families and let you know how we can best partner with each other to meet the health and safety needs of our Underwood students.


At Underwood (and throughout NPS) we continue to carry out the health pillars to prevent the spread of COVID 19.  These pillars include mask-wearing of students and staff, frequent handwashing, staying home when sick, high-quality ventilation in our school building, vaccination of staff, and 3 tiered testing of those who have opted in.  

At Underwood, 85% of our students have opted in for testing.

If your student is a close contact of a positive COVID case from an exposure outside of school, please let me know so we can talk about next steps.  

If your student is not feeling well, please follow the Health Assessment Tool below.

Health Assessment Tool For Underwood Families

Does your student have any of the following symptoms?

  • Fever (100F or higher) and/or chills 
  • Cough (not due to other known causes, such as a chronic cough) 
  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath 
  • New loss of taste or smell 
  • Muscle aches or body aches 
  • Sore throat (when in combination with 1 or more other symptoms)
  • Headache (when in combination with 1 or more other symptoms) 
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea (when in combination with 1 or more other symptoms)
  • Fatigue (when in combination with 1 or more other symptoms) 
  • Nasal congestion or runny nose (not due to other known causes, such as allergies & when in combination with 1 or more other symptoms) 

If your answer to any of the above is ‘yes’ keep your student home. 

  • Call the Underwood Absence Line to report the absence: 617-559-9680
  • Contact your student’s health care provider.
  • Schedule a PCR test and inform Nurse Carrie
Download your copy of the Health Assessment Tool – or grab a copy from the infobox by the school sign.

Other Health Issues:

I also invite you to inform me if your student has had any recent illnesses that are unrelated to COVID such as strep throat, the FLU, other infectious illnesses, or if your student is being treated at home with antibiotics or any other new medications. In addition, if your student has been struggling with emotional issues that you think may be impacting his/her health or well-being, I encourage you to let me know.  The more information I have, the more accurately I am able to assess and effectively address the health needs of our students.  All communication with parents about their student’s health needs will be kept confidential unless the parent gives permission to have the information shared with their student’s teacher.

Injuries Outside Of School:

Please inform me if your student has been injured outside of school and is arriving at school wearing a cast, brace, or any orthopedic device.  I will then be able to communicate with your child’s teachers, including the PE teacher about any physical restrictions pertaining to the injury.

Health Screenings:

This year DESE has revised the mandated screenings in light of the extra work that has been placed on school nurses due to COVID 19. 

  • Kindergarten Vision screening will be done for students who have not had it as part of their annual physical.  
  • Vision screening will also be done for 1st, 3rd, 4th and 5th grades.
  • Hearing screening will be done for 1st and 3rd grade.
  • If you want to OPT OUT of hearing or vision screening, please contact me.
  • Postural (scoliosis) screening will be done for 5th grade on an OPT-IN basis. You will receive information on this after the holidays.
  • BMI Screening will not be done this year

Parents will be informed if their student does NOT pass any of the screenings so that the student can be further evaluated by a specialist.

Please know that I can do any screening at any time if the teacher or parent requests it due to concern that the student may be having problems with vision or hearing. 

Always feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns about your student’s physical or emotional well-being so that we can work together to keep our students healthy, safe and ready to learn:)

~Nurse Carrie