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School Head Lice Policies Fail to Protect Kids

It’s head lice season. Unfortunately, you can’t count on the schools for much support thanks to lax (or non-existent) school head lice policies for some Metro Detroit school districts.

School Head Lice Policies Fail to Protect Kids

I’m not sure I understand why, but it seems as though lice has become a part of the HIPAA requirements and everyone is hush hush about it rather than proactively putting a stop to the spread of head lice in schools. Basically, it’s become a private issue and nobody is allowed to openly search for lice or single out any students. And, by singling out, I just simply performing lice checks.


My daughter was struck with lice at her school four times in one year. I begged for the school to do a lice check. Getting hit with lice is a huge setback for my pocketbook. I own a home business and each time we had to deal with the lice, I had to shut down my operations to sterilize my home and nit pick my daughter’s hair. I eventually threw money at the problem and took her to Rapunzel’s Lice Boutique, which has guaranteed methods to get rid of the lice instantly, but at a high cost.

I can’t point fingers because it’s all hearsay, but many of the moms would chime in and say they heard about a student here and there that would keep returning to school even though infected. The more concerned parents became, the more the school seemed to shuffle and hide from the outbreaks that were occurring throughout the school. Many school head lice policies in Oakland County seem to be non-existent.

There are so many reasons and opportunities for the schools to step in and put a quicker stop to the spread. First, why are schools not requiring a head check before an infected child can return back to school? And, why aren’t there teams of people doing periodic head lice checks and sending infected kids home? This is how it was done when I was a kid and let me tell you… even as an elementary school student, I appreciated it. I never once got embarrassed that someone was checking me for lice. I was happy they were being so proactive about it and I never ended up getting it. I can’t recall ever having an outbreak like we’ve experienced at my kids’ school. It’s because it was ok to do something about it.

This tip-toeing method of protecting all the kids privacy is not going to help anyone. I was never able to get a straight answer from the school as to why we can’t perform head lice checks in school like the good old days. And, if it’s such a big deal, why can’t we all sign waivers that we’re ok with it? I know I’m not the only one opposed to how it’s being handled these days. And, until someone shows me it’s somehow illegal, I’ll be bitter about this new “see no evil, speak no evil, hear no evil” policy.

I calculated the money we had to invest in this problem and it was the sum of a small family vacation up north. I’m not even going to mention the time off of school my daughter lost. Putting it into that perspective makes it look even more ridiculous for how we’re forced to sit back and just let this happen.

I’ve since done everything possible I can do. I put my daughter’s hair in a bun every single day of school and spray her hair with all the magical anti-lice leave-in sprays. So far, so good.. but with no thanks to the schools. It’s time to rethink school head lice policies and do more to prevent the spread.

What is the head lice policy in your kids’ school district? Is it effective? I think we need tougher school head lice policies.

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