Head Lice (Pediculosis) Protocol

  1. Upon discovery of a student with a lice infestation, the nurse will contact the parent/guardian and give instructions for treatment.
  2. A student identified during the school day may remain in school the remainder of the day at the nurse’s discretion. The student may return to school after treatment with a pediculicide.
  3. Upon return to school, the parent/guardian should accompany the student and be prepared to provide the nurse with the name of the pediculicide product used in treatment.
  4. When the student returns to school a follow up will be conducted.
  5. Students will not be examined for head lice more than once every 7-10 days after treatment.

The following principles should be stressed when managing apparent head lice outbreaks:

  • A head lice infestation is a mild health condition without serious health consequences for a child, and should not be considered as a major health threat to those infested or those potentially exposed.
  • Head lice can NOT be completely eliminated from communities or schools. Neither the occurrence of a case nor an outbreak should be considered as evidence of a breakdown in hygienic practices on the part of individuals, families, or schools.
  • The most effective point of control of head lice is the household. Parents, not school employees, are best suited to screen their children for head lice and to properly treat and control lice within the household.
  • School policies should reflect the mild nature of this health condition, the impracticality of total elimination, and the low risk of transmission by a child under treatment. Protocols and practices should have a minimal disruptive effect on children’s educational experiences and minimal stigmatizing impact on children.

Thanks for your consideration of this.

Karin Allen, BSN, RN
School Nurse
USD #331