IT IS is disturbing to learn that some parents with children who have hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) continue to send them to school because they are unable or unwilling to take leave from work.
While many would be quick to blame the parents for being irresponsible, I think the issue is not so simple.
The whole work environment needs to be conducive. Employers need to be empathetic and should not discriminate against parents who have to take leave to care for their child.
In a neighbouring country, I have been given to understand that working parents are entitled to paid childcare leave and a medical certificate need not be presented.
Malaysia should introduce a similar provision, with controls put in place to prevent abuse.
Furthermore, schools should have procedures to ensure the infected child is absent either by way of a fine or provide a more comprehensive solution where some form of childcare can be provided.
I know it is easier said than done but hours put into working this out would be far more impactful than a change in the colour of students shoes.
Did you find this article insightful?