Your fave lice lady is back today with a hot topic! The AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) has changed protocol for public school in regards to how they handle head lice. The reasoning behind this, which I support, is to keep children from missing valuable school hours due to head lice. Now, before you get all angry, please keep in mind that head lice are by no means a health threat.They won’t make your child sick, and they dont actually hurt anyone aside from mental anguish that the parents endure trying to get rid of it!
The AAP now states that children are NOT to be sent home due to the presence of lice or nits in their hair.
So, what does this mean for schools and parents?
In my professional opinion, lice is an issue that gets brought INTO schools, it doesnt come from the school and truly, school nurses are busy handling meds and dealing with actual medical situations throughout the day. Headlice is not at the top of their responsibility or priority list. That being said, in order to battle a full on lice outbreak, we’ve all gotta work together!
What can parents do?
If your child has head lice, notify notify notify! Send an email to the teacher and school nurse. Let your child’s bestie know, tell babysitters, grandparents… I always tell my clients that it’s nice to be nice, but really you should tell anyone who could give lice BACK to your family. Notify for selfish reasons if you have to!
What can schools do?
School administrators deal with alot day in and day out to keep things running safely and smoothly for our children. While lice is frustrating, it’s not a “danger”. That being said, what I would recommend is quickening the notification process. Just as they do with strep, they should send an email to classroom parents notifying them of any case of lice in the classroom. I alwasy say if there are three, there are eight! Notifying parents quickly and efficiently places the responsibilty on caregivers to keep an eye on their kids for any evidence of lice and will also help to end the cycle of it continuously passing around a classroom faster.
Bottom line, when it comes to lice, Teamwork is esssential!