Baltimore County School District
Baltimore County schools dropped their “no nit” policy in 2012 and the policy has been revised as follows:
“The Health Department has changed its head lice policy from “No Nit” to “No Live Lice”, based on recommendations from the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the National Association of School Nurses. As a result, if a child is found to have live lice, that child will be excluded at the end of the school day (or earlier if needed). A consideration for the child to be re-admitted will be made once treatment has started, if there are no live lice found upon re-screening by a school health nurse or school health aide.
Children should be taught to avoid activities that may spread head lice:
- Avoid head-to-head (hair-to-hair) contact during play and other activities at home, school, and elsewhere (sports activities, playground, slumber parties, camp).
- Do not share clothing such as hats, scarves, coats, sports uniforms, hair ribbons, or barrettes.
- Do not share combs, brushes, or towels.
- Do not lie on beds, couches, pillows, carpets, or stuffed animals that have recently been in contact with an infested person.
Families are encouraged to screen their school-aged children regularly (weekly if possible) and notify the school health staff immediately if head lice or their nits (eggs) are found. We welcome the opportunity to teach caretakers how to check a child’s head for lice. Please contact the School Health Suite Staff if you have any questions regarding this policy.”
Learn more at www.baltimorecountymd.gov.
Anne Arundel School District Lice Policy
Schools in Anne Arundel County have a more lenient head lice policy. Each year on average, the district has about 500 cases of lice. The web site acknowledges that head lice are a common problem affecting school age and goes on to say that while lice are a nuisance, they are not a result of poor hygiene.
The district allows children with nits to remain in school. The policy is, Anne Arundel County has a No Live Lice Policy in keeping with the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Association of School Nurses. When students are found to have live lice or nits less than 1/4 inch from the scalp, the parent will be notified…The recommendations are based on studies showing that: Nits are difficult to identify accurately. Children can be misdiagnosed with nits, get treated and miss school unnecessarily. Children with nits further than a 1/4 inch from the scalp are at low risk of reinfection. Head lice, while a nuisance, are not a reason to exclude children from school, interfering with their opportunities to learn and achieve.
Learn more at www.aahealth.org
Howard County School District Lice Policy
Howard County schools retain a “no nit” policy stating, “If a child is found to have head lice, the parents/guardians will be notified.
The child will only be readmitted to the program after the staff determines that the lice treatment has been effective and/or it has been 24 hours since the treatment began.
A notice will be posted, along with a communicable disease fact-sheet.”
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