Return to Learn After a Concussion | The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

Concussion Care for Kids: Minds Matter

Return to Learn After a Concussion

When can my child return to school?

It will depend on your child. Every child’s injury and recovery is unique and requires careful observation from parents and doctors. You can promote recovery and prevent ongoing symptoms by following a “return to learn” plan like the one below. Your doctor will customize this plan based on your child’s recovery, and your child will move through the plan at her own pace.

Video FAQs on "return to learn" plan after a concussion


Return to learn plan

Step 1

Immediately after a concussion, complete cognitive (thinking, processing) rest is beneficial to help reduce your child's symptoms.

Step 2

Light cognitive activity can be resumed once your child has had significant improvement in symptoms at rest.

Step 3

School-specific activity should be increased gradually:

Step 4

Follow these guidelines to determine when your child is ready to return to school:

Call 911 if your child has any of the following symptoms:

  • Seizures (twitching or jerking movement of parts of the body; may look stiff)
  • Weakness or tingling in the arms or legs
  • Cannot recognize people or places
  • Confused, restless or agitated
  • Impaired consciousness
  • Difficult to arouse or unable to awaken
  • Repeated vomiting
  • Slurred speech
  • Bloody or clear fluid from the nose or ears
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If you suspect a concussion

Contact your child’s primary care doctor for evaluation.

Find a CHOP Primary Care physician near you »

If symptoms persist, you can schedule an appointment with
a concussion specialist:

Sports Medicine and Performance Center

Pediatric Trauma Center

Helping Your Child Recover After a Concussion

Download our Return to Learn and Return to Play Plans»

Concussion Worksheet

Download our concussion worksheet log to help monitor your child's concussion symptoms during recovery and share it with your child physician during follow-up visits.;