Arlington School Lice Policy

overhead view of child's arms as they color with crayons

ARLINGTON SCHOOL DISTRICT

Schools in Arlington, Virginia have dropped “no nit” policies; they issued the following policy in 2013. Children with head lice are allowed to stay in school. “In August 2013 the School Health Bureau completed a review of the latest information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy  of Pediatrics, and the National Association of School Nurses regarding head lice in schools. Updated recommendations and best practices are summarized below.

Facts About Head Lice

Head lice move by crawling; they cannot hop or fly. Head lice are spread by direct contact with the hair of an infested person. Anyone who comes into head-to-head contact with someone who already has head lice is at greatest risk. This most commonly occurs at sleepovers and camps. Sharing of personal clothing and items should be discouraged as this can transmit head lice. This includes hats, scarves, and coats, or personal items such as combs, brushes, and towels.Personal hygiene or cleanliness in the home or school has nothing to do with getting head lice.

Head Lice in Schools

  • Head lice are common and are not associated with any significant health conditions

  • No healthy child should be excluded from or miss school because of head lice

  • In-school transmission is rare

  • Stigmatization of children with head lice must be minimized

  • In-school transmission is rare 

Head lice mass screening programs have not had a significant effect on the incidence of head lice in the school setting over time and have not proven to be cost-effective Notification and Treatment. If your child is noted to have head lice or nits in school, you will be notified by School Health staff who will provide recommendations regarding treatment. Your child will not be publicly embarrassed or singled out, nor will they be required to leave school early. Children with live lice should be treated that evening prior to returning to school the next day. Recommendations regarding treatment are available at the websites listed below. Many treatments are available without a prescription. Children who fail standard treatment should be referred to their primary care provider. 

Notification and Treatment

  • If your child is noted to have head lice or nits in school, you will be notified by School Health staff who will provide recommendations regarding treatment. Your child will not be publicly embarrassed or singled out, nor will they be required to leave school early.

  • Children with live lice should be treated that evening prior to returning to school the next day.

  • Recommendations regarding treatment are available at the websites listed below. Many treatments are available without a prescription.
  • Children who fail standard treatment should be referred to their primary care provider.

If you find lice in your child’s hair, call LiceDoctors at 703-662-4519. A technician will make a house call to you and get rid of the lice infestation so that your child can return to school the next day.