Pediculosis - Lice

The Book of Lice English Spanish                                                Parent lice letter - if child checked      
Lice at school Biology                                                                         
 Arabic  Chinese  English  Spanish  
Science behind Lice                                                                             Russian  Vietnamese  for any child checked.       
Health Room guidelines, checking for and managing outbreaks        Parent Checklist Arabic Chinese           Head lice Management Checklist (from Book of LIce)       English  Spanish  Russian  Vietnamese
                              Classroom Lice letter Arabic  Chinese                                                                                                                                   English   Spanish   Russian  Vietnamese  
Bedbug resources                                                                                                                give out day after confirmed case of lice
                                                                                                             Informational FAQ parent letter English Spanish                                                                                                                                             send each semester
Lice at School
Head lice are a nuisance – not a health hazard! The head louse, scientifically referred to as Pediculous humanus capitis, is a tiny insect that seems to evoke a super-sized response. Because of the myths and the stigmas attached to the presence of head lice, it is important for the Health aide and school staff to demonstrate understanding, sensitivity and confidentiality regarding head lice. 
lice life cycle
Lice lifecycle

Scientific facts of Head Lice and Lice Nits:
  • Headlice are not readily transmissible in the school environment.
  • Head lice are most commonly transmitted in the family environment –simply by living together.
  • Head lice are common in all socioeconomic groups.
  • Head lice do not fly or jump from head – to head.  Sustained close head contact would be required for head lice to crawl from one head to another.
  • Lice nits are firmly attached “glued” to the hair shaft and therefore do not easily fall onto others or personal belongings.
  • Treatment using a pediculicide type shampoo and/or manually picking nits off is usually effective.
  • Some cases may require a repeat treatment 7-10 days later.
  • Preventive shampoo treatment is not recommended.
  • Parents should periodically inspect their children’s hair and contact their health provider with questions regarding lice and lice treatments.
  • Environmental insecticide sprays should not be used.
Pets do not require head lice treatment.
In addressing the occurrence of head lice in the school setting, the district follows guidelines of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the local public health department. These guidelines discourage “No-Nit” policies in schools – this means that a student who is identified with nits only remains in school even though nits may still be seen on the student’s hair. This minimizes disruption to the student’s academic schedule. Parents will be notified individually by the school if their student is observed with lice nits or live lice.
Lice nits in hair
Nits in hair

Biology and Images of Head Lice
  • Head lice require a human scalp for food, warmth, and shelter – essentially survival.
  • They dwell close to the skin (scalp) feeding on the host’s blood.
  • Adult female lice lay oval-shaped eggs (nits) close to the scalp that are firmly attached to the hair shaft.
  • Nits (the eggs of the head louse) are small yellowish- white, oval-shaped eggs that are " glued to the side of a hair shaft " at an angle
  • Nits must be laid by live lice. You cannot "catch nits."

size of lice
  • Once laid, it takes 7-10 days for a nit to hatch, and another 7-10 days for the female to mature and begin laying her own eggs.
  • Head lice are clear in color when hatched, and then quickly develop a reddish-brown color after feeding.
  • Head lice are about the size of sesame seeds. 
  • Head lice are wingless insects six legs.
  • Head lice are small, wingless insects which feed on human blood. They need human blood in order to survive.
  • Head lice off of their human hosts will starve. The NPA suggests that, in most cases, a head louse will not survive for more than 24 hours off of its human host.
  • Head lice do not thrive on pets.