Head Lice Policy

Head lice continues to cause concern and frustration for some parents, teachers and children.

The centre’s head lice policy is intended to outline roles, responsibilities and expectations of the childcare community to assist with treating and controlling head lice in a consistent and coordinated manner.

Whilst parents have the primary responsibility for the detection and treatment of head lice, LEL will work in a cooperative and collaborative manner to assist all families to manage head lice effectively.

This head lice policy draws on information obtained from the information pamphlet and management guidelines ‘Scratching for Answers.’

It is the expectation of parents/carers and families attending the centre that:

  • Children’s hair will be checked for head lice on a weekly basis at home, using the recommended conditioner/combing detection method.
  • That your child does not attend childcare with untreated head lice (in accordance with Health Infectious Diseases Regulations 2001.)
  • Regularly inspect all household members and then treat if necessary.
  • Parents will notify the centre if their child is found to have live lice and advise when appropriate treatment was commenced (in accordance with Health Infectious Disease Regulations 2001.)
  • Children with long hair will attend childcare with hair tied back.
  • Use only safe and recommended practices to treat head lice.
  • Notify the parents or carers of your child’s friends so they have an early opportunity to detect and treat their children if necessary.
  • Maintain a sympathetic attitude and avoid stigmatising/blaming families who are experiencing difficulty with control measures.

To support parents/carers and the broader childcare community to achieve a consistent, collaborative approach to head lice management the centre will undertake to:

  • Distribute up to date and accurate information on the detection, treatment and control of head lice to parents and staff at the beginning of the year or more frequently if required.
  • Include information and updates in centre newsletters.
  • Include annual head lice updates for staff during meetings.
  • Provide practical advice and maintain a sympathetic attitude and avoid stigmatising/blaming families who are experiencing difficulty with control measures.
  • Access community educational resources and support, such as primary childcare nurses or community health centres.
  • Abide by the recommendations of the School and Children’s Service Centre Exclusion Policy of the Health (Infectious Diseases) Regulations 2001 in that the responsibility to exclude a child from the centre rests with the person in charge of the centre.
  • Only exclude children from childcare who have live head lice.
  • Accept the advice of parents that appropriate treatment has commenced.
  • Encourage children to learn about head lice so as to help remove any stigma or ‘bullying’ associated with the issue.
  • Be aware of real difficulties some parents may encounter and seek extra support if required.

Head Lice Childcare Policy
Policy reviewed August 2017