In keeping with the Kirkwood R-VII School District's policy of avoiding the unnecessary exclusion of students from school, the district will not exclude otherwise healthy students from school due to nit infestations. Students with head lice infestations will be excluded from school only to the minimum extent necessary for treatment. To avoid the unnecessary exclusion of students from school, the administration provides the following procedure:
- Schools will not perform routine schoolwide head lice screening. However, should multiple cases be reported, the nurse will identify the population of students most likely to have been exposed and arrange to have that population of students examined.
- If the school nurse or teacher discovers head lice or nits on a student, the parent/guardian of that student will be notified, and other students who reside with the infected student will also be checked.
- The school nurse will instruct the parent/guardian concerning various shampoos, sprays and other appropriate treatments that can be purchased to eliminate head lice or nits and will also give information concerning necessary procedures to be taken in the home to ensure that the head lice are eliminated.
- If the student was infected with live head lice, the student may be permitted to return to school after appropriate treatment has been started.
- When a student who had a live head lice infestation returns to school, the student will be examined by the school nurse. If live head lice are found at that time, the parent/guardian will again be called and reinstructed concerning treatment. This process will continue until the student is free of head lice.
- A student who was identified as having nits but not a live head lice infestation will be re-examined within five (5) calendar days of the initial identification. If this examination reveals nits are still present, the parent/guardian will again be instructed on treatment options. This process will repeat until the student is free of nits.
- The school nurse will keep accurate and confidential records of students infected with head lice or nits.
- If it appears the parent/guardian of an infested student is failing to secure timely treatment for the infestation after having been given notice of the existence of head lice or nits in accordance with these procedures, the nurse will notify the school principal, who may report the matter to the Children's Division (CD) of the Department of Social Services.
The school nurse will develop education programs regarding the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of head lice for staff, students, parents and the community.