Head lice is a concern seen in our schools each year. Parents should assume that lice are present where children are, and should screen their own children on a weekly basis. If your child contracts head lice, you may contact your school nurse for information and treatment protocol. Ankeny Community School District follows Iowa Department of Public Health guidelines to assist in the management and control of head lice in the school setting. Students are not excluded or sent home from school if they have head lice, though treatment should be started before returning to school the next day.
Facts About Head Lice:
Head lice are mostly spread through direct head to head contact.
It is much harder to get head lice than it is to get a cold, strep throat or pink eye.
Lice can only crawl. They cannot jump or fly.
School is not a common source of transmission. Children are more likely to get head lice from family members and close friends they play with often.
Lice only live 1-2 days off of the head.
Nits (eggs) are cemented to the hair shaft and are very hard to remove. They do not fall off.
Hygiene does not make a difference with head lice. Head lice are transmitted through head to head contact with a person who has head lice. It does not matter if the hair is dirty or clean.
Head lice is annoying and irritating but it does not spread disease.
Source: (Pediatric Nursing, September-October 2014/Vol. 40/No. 5)