Can a child with HIV attend school with other children?
Children with HIV can participate in normal, daily activities with other children including school, play, parties, and other activities. HIV is not transmitted through casual contact and there is no evidence that other children are at risk from contracting HIV in these situations.
It is not necessary for parents to disclose their child’s HIV status to the school or to other contacts. If in the case of trauma, any child who sustains an injury that causes bleeding should be treated with standard precautions, meaning that anyone caring for the child should wear gloves and dispose of materials contaminated with blood so that others are protected.
A child who is severely immune suppressed from HIV infection may be more susceptible to illnesses, specifically chickenpox [varicella zoster virus (VZV) infection]. If a child with HIV infection has not had VZV infection, the school should be notified so that the parent can be told if the child is exposed to chickenpox in the classroom. This can be done without disclosing the child’s HIV status by simply informing the school that the child has not had VZV infection and the child’s parents request notification if there is an exposure.