Sarasota Schools Say Yes to Students with Nits, But No to Students with Live Lice
Research by LiceDoctors Head Lice Treatment Service reveals school districts in the Sarasota, Florida area have adopted a comprehensive and relatively lenient head lice policies that allows students with nits into school. Students with live lice will be sent home.
The rationale behind the revised recommendations by these groups is that too many students were missing too many days of schools for something that is a nuisance but not an illness. In addition. the American Academy of Pediatrics states that by the time a case is identified, usually a couple of weeks have gone by giving the child ample opportunity to spread lice to his or her friends.
This trend has been met with mixed reviews from school nurses across the region. Some nurses say that it is appropriate to allow students with nits to remain in school as they have had students who missed days and even weeks due to head lice nits. Others are uncomfortable allowing students with nits into school citing fear that it will encourage the spread of lice to other children. This is especially the case in elementary schools, where children are more likely to be in close contact with each other.
The debate on the topic of head lice is likely to continue according to Karen Sokoloff, owner of LiceDoctors Head Lice Treatment and Nit Removal Service. "There are reasonable arguments to be made both in favor and against 'no nit" policies. While all children should be in school, parents who have invested time and money into successfully removing nits from their children's hair, are understandably worried about their child being reinfested. An important point is that nits are not contagious, but it is very important for students with nits to be treated with a follow-up plan."
Sarasota schools have a specific protocol when a child is found to have signs of lice. According to the district, "Students who are displaying signs of head lice, such as excessive scratching of the head, may be sent to the health room to be checked as needed. A thorough examination of the hair and scalp should be done for the presence of live lice. Siblings should be checked for lice infestation as well. If nits are present, contact parent/guardian and send Nit Notification and Treatment letter home with student. Student can return to class with a pass from the health room aide or RN. Student must report to the health room on a daily basis to monitor process of nit removal until no nits are found. Student must report to the health room in 10 days for a final recheck. If nits are still present, the RN should be notified for follow up. If lice are present, call parent to pick up the student."
To become educated about head lice, visit LiceDoctors' web site at www.licedoctors.com. LiceDoctors has an in-home lice treatment service that has successfully treated nearly 45,000 families using a natural lice treatment plan developed by their board-certified medical director 19 years ago. The company has the Better Business Bureau Seal of Approval and can be contacted in Sarasota at 941-404-2333. In Florida, LiceDoctors also makes house calls in Jacksonville, Orlando, Tampa, and Fort Myers. LiceDoctors can also be reached at 800-224-2537.