Cedar Rapids Community School District
More information: www.cr.k12.ia.us
Cedar Rapids schools have a lenient head lice policy which allows students to remain in school with lice, although the schools emphasize prevention. In addition, students with lice are referred to the health office.
“As a part of a community plan, the Cedar Rapids Community School District will support families by emphasizing prevention, early detection and education as the best edge in controlling head lice.
Pediculosis (head lice) represents a common communicable childhood condition, an acknowledged “problem” with raising and caring for children. Community involvement is deemed very important, and families must actively participate at home in the treatment and prevention of head lice. The plan established by the Cedar Rapids Community School District is designed to be family friendly and sensitive to individual needs. Our goal is to support families and keep kids where they need to be—in school!
Students with signs and symptoms of head lice will be referred to the school health office for evaluation and recommendations for treatment. However, no child will be excluded from school. Families in elementary classrooms where one or more students are found to have lice will be notified.
This plan emphasizes comprehensive education and community involvement. Enhanced support will be offered to families. Working together, we can minimize the impact of head lice in our schools and communities.
This plan was developed following the recommendations of the Linn County Public Health Department, Iowa Department of Public Health, National Association of School Nurses, American Academy of Pediatrics and the Center for Disease Control (CDC).”
Benton County Schools
More information: www.bcos.org (pg 21)
Benton County schools have a far stricter head lice policy than Cedar Rapids schools. This district prohibits students with lice from returning to school until all nits have been removed. This district’s policy is the most stringent in the area proximate to Cedar Rapids.
“In the event a student is found to have lice, parents will be notified immediately. The student must be removed from school and treated. Benton County has a ‘no nit’ policy, which means your child cannot return to school until all nits have been removed from the hair. Head Lice Policy The student will be sent home immediately. The parent will pursue treatment. The parent must accompany the student upon return to school with written medical documentation that no nits are present. No more than two (2) days absence will be excused for treatment. What To Do If Your Child Comes Home With Head Lice Head lice cannot survive without a human host. They cannot survive on family pets. Choose an effective treatment, use as directed, and perform the steps listed to eliminate head lice from you home and to help prevent the spread in the school community. Anyone, adult or youngster can get head lice. It is passed from person to person by direct contact or on shared objects (combs, towels, headphones, caps, etc.) It has nothing to do with cleanliness and does not reflect poorly on parenting skills. The problem is easily managed.”
Linn-Marr Community School District
More information: www.linnmar.k12.ia.us
This district maintains a liberal head lice policy much like Cedar Rapids’ school lice policy.
“In accordance with the State of Iowa and Linn County Departments of Health, Linn-Mar Community Schools has implemented a community plan that will support families by emphasizing prevention, early detection and education in the management of head lice.
Family involvement is very important in preventing head lice outbreaks and families must actively participate at home in the treatment of control of head lice. Our goal is to support families and keep students in school.
Students with head lice will not be excluded from school. Treatment is recommended before returning to school.
For more information visit www.idph.state.ia.us or www.cdc.gov/lice/head”
Muscatine Community School District
More information: www.muscatine.k12.ia.us
The Muscatine School District follows the recommendations of the American Association of Pediatrics and does not have a “no nit” policy, which means that students with nits may attend school.
“The Musatine Community School District does not have a ‘No Nit Policy’. This means that children with nits (eggs) are allowed to attend classes. The school nurse intermittently screens each classroom during the school year. Students who are found to have lice are managed on an individual basis. Students may be sent home for prompt and thorough treatment. The school nurse will remain in contact with the family during the treatment process until it is resolved. Students who continue to have problems resolving this condition may have their case reviewed with the principal and school social worker. Students are not excluded from school while they are being treated for lice.”
Iowa City Community School District
More information: www.iowacityschools.org
This district also maintains a liberal head lice policy. As long as a student is being treated for head lice, he or she may attend school.
- When a student is suspected of having head lice, the secretary or other school staff should contact the school nurse. Any student suspected of having head lice should be checked in a private area away from other students or staff.
- The school nurse will check the student’s head for lice, sometime during the day the report was made, if possible.
- If the student has visible lice, the following plan will be followed:
a. If the newly identified student has live lice and/or nits, the parents will be notified by letter (and phone, if possible), with instructions on how to treat the lice.
ii. Parents are asked to treat the lice that same day/ evening with medicated shampoo.
ii.Parents are asked to complete the check-off list and return to school with the student.
b.The student will be allowed to stay at school for the remainder of the day at the discretion of the school nurse. Factors considered by the nurse in making this decision include the following:
i.How severe is the lice infestation?
ii.Is this a chronic condition for this student/family?
iii.Is the family working with the nurse in resolving the situation?
iv.Does the family have adequate resources/ ability to treat the lice?
c.The school nurse will follow-up with the student/ family the following day, if possible.
- The school nurse will only screen classmates who are showing signs of head lice, i.e.
scratching their heads/nape of the neck. If multiple students in one classroom have confirmed head lice at one time, then the whole classroom maybe screened by the school nurse if appropriate. (Because of the close contact of children in the preschool classrooms, these classrooms will be screened if one or more students in the specific classroom have head lice.)
- Informational letters will be sent home to parents of students in the specific classroom
when one or more cases of head lice are confirmed by the school nurse.
a.These letters are intended only to inform parents and to ask them to screen their own children for head lice. CONFIDENTIALITY of the affected students is to be respected at all times.
- The school nurse will work with families of students who have chronic head lice. This may include regular head checks of these students, education to parents on how to treat
the lice and prevent recurring head lice, and assisting these families to get the appropriate resources to treat the lice and prevent further outbreaks.
- If there is a case of head lice in a classroom, we ask staff to respect the confidentiality of
the student affected. This can be very stigmatizing and embarrassing to children and families.
At the same time, it is important to remind students to not share hats, combs, and pillows. Coats could be placed on the backs of chairs.
- The school nurses will provide information to teachers and staff about head lice and current recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Health Department.
- Any questions should be directed to the Health Services staff.”
Dubuque Community School District
More information: dbqschools.org
Basically, children identified as having head lice need to treat the case according to Dubuque Community School District lice policy. If live lice present after two weeks, then the child may be excluded from school.
“Your child will not be excluded from school on the day head lice are first detected. Child/children can be excluded from school if live lice are observed after the two-week treatment plan is completed. Re-admittance of the child to school after exclusion will be at the discretion of the school nurse and also after the child has been re-treated. Exclusion from a school is not punitive but is intended to respect the right of each individual to be louse free.
- The school nurse or designated personal will provide information for the family on the treatment and prevention of head lice. The health office will send home a copy of the DCSD Head Lice Control Checklist (handout B) to aid the family with treatment of head lice.
- Open communication is encouraged between schools, health care providers, agencies and families in an effort to reduce the incidence of head lice.
- Families are responsible for weekly inspection of their child’s hair and for reporting head lice to appropriate schools, child care providers or other close contacts.
- The parents, families or designated adults will be responsible for completing the nit and/or lice removal.
- Families who have difficulty purchasing the lice-killing shampoos (pediculocides) should contact the school nurse who can direct the family to other resources or recommend alternative treatments.
- School will not do mass screenings, but will screen on an individual basis by referral from parent/guardian or school staff.”
It is important for parents to know your child’s school lice policy. If you have any further questions about your child’s school policy, call the school nurse. For further questions about LiceDoctors, call us at 319-382-6720. An expert lice technician will eliminate your head lice. That’s a guarantee!Learn About Our Lice Treatment Service in Cedar Rapids