Head Lice Protocol American Leadership Academy

Policy Number: 3340

Dated: 3/8/2012

Head Lice Protocol American Leadership Academy

About Head Lice

Head lice are a fairly common problem in school age children. While head lice is a nuisance it does not pose a significant health hazard and is not known to spread disease. Head lice can be acquired anywhere in the community and may not be identified until weeks to months after exposures. Having head lice is not related to cleanliness of the person or their environment. Lice will live less than 2 days off of the head and do not jump or fly, but crawl very fast.

Since having head lice is considered undesirable, parents/guardians, and schools have a shared responsibility to manage and minimize the spread of lice.

Suspected Head Lice

The following signs may be reason to suspect a student of having head lice:

      1. The student complains of itching on the scalp or is observed repeatedly scratching behind ears, nape of the neck or anywhere else in the scalp
      2. The student has a pink rash around or in the scalp area.
      3. The student has nits (eggs) on the hair shaft or they have live lice present in their hair.

Intervention and Notification

School personnel are authorized to screen individual students for head lice if symptomatic, but screenings are not to disrupt instructional time. When the presence of head lice is confirmed on a student, administrators and/or the school nurse shall take appropriate action, which includes, but is not limited to, the following procedures:

      1. If nits (lice eggs) are found (but no head lice):
        • The student may remain in the classroom.
        • Provide the parents/guardians with current information about the treatment of head lice.
        • Send the student home after school for treatment.
      2. If head lice is found in the hair:
        • Discretely remove the student from the classroom and call the parent/guardian.
        • Provide the parent/guardian with current information about the treatment of head lice.
        • Send the student home with the parent/guardian for treatment
        • If there are multiple students with head lice in one classroom, administrators or nurse shall send home an email to the other parents letting them know and provide current information on checking for head lice and the treatment of.
      3. If students are sent home for treatment either during or after school, the student should return to school after treatment and showing no signs of live lice.
        • Parent/guardian are asked to report the treatment procedures used and school personnel may screen student upon return.
        • Students who do not return the next school day should be contacted to determine the cause of the absence.

Treatment Information for Home

Information provided to parents/guardians shall include four basic components of treatment:

      1. Kill the head lice: Recognized treatments (both pediculicide and non-toxic) kill head lice, but treatments may need to be repeated to be effective. All members of the same household with head lice should be treated at the same time.
      2. Remove the nits: This essential step helps prevent self-re-infestation.
      3. Clean and treat the environment: Personal clothing, bedding, car seats, etc. should be washed and treated, if necessary to prevent self-re-infestation.
      4. On-going inspections: all family members should be inspected daily for two weeks for possible re- infestation. Families may contact a physician for recurrent cases.