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Florida School Policy on Lice and Attendance

For Some, Lice Is No Reason to Skip School

A school district in Southern Florida has adopted a new policy on lice, and parents are none too pleased. Broward County Public Schools students who have head lice are now instructed to stay in school while undergoing treatment for the nits (the lice eggs). NBC news reported that the district took the following stance: "Each school year, millions of students are affected with head lice and lose educational time due to absenteeism. No disease is associated with head lice; therefore students with head lice may attend school while undergoing treatment for the nits."

Sounds gross and shocking (especially for anyone who's ever had to deal with lice), but the policy is in fact in line with the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Association of School Nurses.

As a parent of school-age children who's had the pleasure of witnessing lice in our classroom, this just icks me out. What do you think?

Source: Flickr user Brad Flickinger

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JillLeverett JillLeverett 2 years

If you actually look at the facts about headlice you will find that they are not caused by gross uncleanliness. My children shower and wash their hair daily I check at least once a week for headlice but this still hasn't stopped them from getting them once. You are obviously in an incredibly lucky position where you can afford the £100 fine that we will be given for keeping our children off school for no good reason and according to the education authority headlice is not a good reason. And I'm glad my children don't go to school with yours if they are also as badly informed about headlice as you seem to be.

JillLeverett JillLeverett 2 years

I'm afraid if I told my childs school I was keeping them at home because of headlice I would probably be prosecuted by the Educational Authority. I don't want my children to catch a lot of things like stomach bugs, colds, chicken pox but unless I keep them in the house 24/7 its going to happen at some point. Also many of the lice treatments require 2 uses over at least a week/10 days and this is an unacceptable length of time to keep any child off school.

JillLeverett JillLeverett 2 years

I have been lucky in the fact that my daughter has only had lice once and I certainly didn't keep her off school for this and to be quite honest none of the schools in the UK expect a child to be absent because of this. The school must be informed so a letter can be sent to other parents. I treated my daughters hair made sure it was tightly plaited and rolled into a bun and told her she must keep her head away from other children and this is perfectly acceptable. Lice is not an illness.

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