Coronavirus guidelines for the early childhood education and education services


Common guidelines for the City of Kalajoki’s early childhood education and education services on protection against coronavirus infection, coronavirus testing and response to infection symptoms, 28 August 2020

COVID-19 is primarily transmitted though droplet transmission when the infected person e.g. coughs, sneezes or talks. Some people who are infected with COVID-19 have very minor symptoms or none at all and are therefore unaware of their infection. The virus can already be transmitted a few days before the onset of symptoms.

In coronavirus testing, consideration is given to the regional situation of prevalence. Currently, the procedural guidelines for cases of infection with regard to early childhood education and education services in the area of the City of Kalajoki are as follows. The guidelines take into account the instructions issued by THL on 24 August 2020 for the testing of children due to symptoms.

  1. To day care and school only when healthy
    To prevent the spread of infections, it is important not to go to early childhood education units (day care centres, group family day care, family day care) or school with symptoms of a respiratory infection. Exceptions to this are the allergic symptoms described in section 2b below.In addition to respiratory symptoms, symptoms of coronavirus infection may include fever, shortness of breath, muscle ache, fatigue, nausea and diarrhoea. Loss of the sense of smell and taste have also been reported as symptoms of the infection.
  2. What to do when a child or adolescent has symptoms of a respiratory infection?

When a guardian finds that their child has symptoms of infection, the child must not go to school or day care.

A child must be taken for testing if their guardian or a healthcare professional considers their symptoms compatible with a coronavirus infection, with the following exceptions:

  1. If the symptoms are very mild and the child is not known to have been exposed to a confirmed case of coronavirus and no one in the family has travelled abroad in the previous 14 days, the symptoms can be monitored at home without testing. However, a symptomatic child cannot go to school or day care.
  2. If a child has allergic rhinitis, isolated sneezes or a runny nose when outdoors but the symptoms end when indoors, the child can go to school or day care as long as their general condition is otherwise normal and there are no symptoms of infection.

If the symptoms completely disappear during monitoring, there is no need to go for testing. Instead, the child can return to school or day care after one day without symptoms.

If the test is taken but the result is delayed, the child can return to school or day care after one day without symptoms if the child is not known to have been exposed to a confirmed case of coronavirus and no one in the family has travelled abroad in the previous 14 days.

  1. When to seek testing, and who gets tested?
    If the symptoms do not improve during home monitoring and despite medication, you should seek testing with a low threshold. Testing takes place at the Himanka infection appointment unit, which must always first be contacted by phone on +358 (0)44 4691 502.

If the test result is negative, the child may return to school or day care once they are recovering, even if the symptoms have not completely subsided.

One negative coronavirus test result is sufficient for members of one family that have fallen ill at the same time. It is not necessary to test all family members.

If a child’s respiratory symptoms persist, they do not need to be tested repeatedly as long as the symptoms remain the same.

Contact with others should be avoided until the test result is obtained. While waiting for the result of a family member’s coronavirus test, other asymptomatic family members may live normally.

Asymptomatic individuals, such as those who have already recovered from a respiratory infection, do not need to be tested.

Schools and day care providers do not have the right to require a certificate of a negative test result.

The unit responsible for communicable diseases in the municipality or hospital district may issue detailed guidelines on testing practices for children based on the regional epidemic situation. These guidelines can therefore be updated as needed if the disease situation in the area changes.


Anu Eskelinen
Chief Physician
City of Kalajoki