Back to School for Parents and Families

Back to school is an important time for parents and families to prioritize their children’s health and well-being. To aid in this effort, we have created a page to help parents navigate the various resources available from the Department of Health Services, the Department of Public Instruction, the Department of Children and Families, the Office of Children's Mental Health and other family-serving organizations. A back to school checklist (PDF) is also available to help you and your family prepare for the new school year.


Routine childhood vaccinations

Make sure your child is up-to-date on vaccines that protect them from many serious but preventable diseases. Make a plan to receive routine vaccinations and don't forget the annual flu vaccine.

Does your child have their vaccines?

A laughing adult holding a laughing child

To protect students and children from diseases that are preventable by immunization, Wisconsin law requires all students to show that they have received the required immunizations or have a signed waiver.

 

Preventing COVID-19

This school year, in-person learning is a priority in Wisconsin. Yet, COVID-19 is still spreading in our communities, so we all must take precautions to protect the health and safety of Wisconsin children. This includes wearing a mask in school and on the bus, washing hands frequently, and staying home when sick or after close contact with someone with COVID-19. Have a plan in place in the event your child needs to stay home from school for isolation and quarantine. COVID-19 testing may be offered through your child's school. In order for your child to be tested, you will need to provide your consent for the testing program. Currently, if your child is 12 or older, they are eligible to receive the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. When they are fully vaccinated, they have a far lower risk of getting severely sick, being hospitalized, or dying from COVID-19.

Learn more about vaccinating your child and other ways to protect your child from COVID-19 this school year at COVID-19: Resources for Parents and Guardians.

Health care and dental resources

Prioritizing a child’s physical health and access to quality health care can help them succeed in the classroom. Routine childhood health care visits help prevent conditions and illnesses and ensure your child is healthy. At a routine childhood health care visit, your child may receive childhood vaccines, weight and height check-ups, nutrition counseling, anemia and lead testing, support for language development, and more.

 

Resources for health-related conditions

Many Wisconsin children live with a health-related condition that may affect their performance in the classroom. Seeking care for these health-related conditions can help your child stay healthy and succeed in school.

 

Staying healthy and active

Physical activity, proper nutrition, and adequate sleep are important to good health. Making healthy meals and staying active together as a family can help support your child's health and well-being.

Boy standing by tomato plant holding two tomatoes over his eyes

 

Healthy social behavior

The school year is a great opportunity for your child to develop and enhance their social skills. It’s important for parents to have the tools they need to encourage healthy relationship development and reduce the likelihood of risky behavior.

 

Mental health resources

If you or your child is struggling with a mental health or behavioral health challenge, you’re not alone. Many families find the school year to be a challenging time for their child’s well-being. Here are resources to help you better understand these challenges and how you can help.

Simple tools for home or school

  • Mental Health Crisis Card: List 3 things someone can do to help you de-escalate in the first 5 minutes of a mental health crisis or agitated state.
  • Feelings Thermometer: Use a visual tool to measure how you are doing emotionally and what steps you can take to shift your mood when things are getting tough.

Specific Conditions

Suicide Prevention

Resilience and effective coping strategies

Support for accessing services

Resources on substance use

Know the signs and get the resources you need to prevent substance use.

 

Support and self-care resources for parents and guardians

The school year can be a stressful time for any parent. Managing everyone’s work and school schedule can leave parents with little time to take care of themselves. Here are resources to help you prioritize your health and well-being this year.

 

Adult and young child in the park

 

211 Wisconsin

Call 211 or 877-947-2211 to get referrals for thousands of services across Wisconsin. For COVID-19 questions, text COVID to 211-211. Language assistance is available.

Resilient Wisconsin

Get help learning how to manage stress and adapt to change with services and support from organizations across the state.

Helpful resources

Find help with housing, income, food, employment, health care, mental health concerns, safety at home, and more—in multiple languages.

Last Revised: September 2, 2021