New Law Sets Strict School Guidelines About Lice

September 11, 2017
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A new law in Texas is aimed at educating Parents about the health of their kids.

Senate Bill 1566, which came into effect on September 1, requires schools to notify parents within 48 hours if their child is found with lice.

The new law also requires the districts to notify other parents in the classroom within five days.

If it’s in the classroom I really want to know, but if it’s not in their classroom it’s just a good idea to know,” said father David Namiot.

Namiot says that he’s not a so-called germophobe but he does try to talk to his kids about washing their hands regularly and keeping clean. However, he likes to know when something is going around the school.

When they send those kinds of notes home, I check and make sure the kids are squared away,” he said.

Another Parent, Jose Favela agrees.

Your first interest is your child’s safety and your child’s health, but you can’t always keep them in a bubble so you have to just make sure you’re checking up on everything day by day,” Favela said. “As long as they’re letting us know so that we could be checking our kids, I think it’s fine.”

However, the law does not require students to stay at home if they are found to have lice or force schools to excuse the absence.

Ysleta Independent School District spokesperson Chris Lechuga says that the district’s policies haven’t changed, and students are given excused absences.

For another school – San Elizario Independent School District, the policy is to not excuse the absences but to let the parents know that their children cannot return to school until they are treated, according to spokesperson Hector Gonzalez. They then also send home educational materials with the students.

Clint Independent School District sends the students home as an excused absence.

The other Borderland school districts didn’t comment after requests for information but answered some questions about school policies earlier this year.

The El Paso operations manager of the Lice Clinic of America, Pedro Gonzalez, says that he’s undecided about whether students should stay home.

I’m kind of on the fence there. I don’t want other kids to get lice but I also want that kid to learn and if they’re at home, they’re not going to be able to learn,” Gonzalez told the media. His clinic uses an AirAllé machine to get rid of not only the lice but also their eggs. He says that he thinks the letters home to parents are a good idea.

“Not many parents are going to be checking their heads if they don’t know,” Gonzalez said. “A letter could instigate parents to check their child’s head.”

Gonzalez encourages parents to not panic if their child is found to have lice and to understand that there are options that are more effective than over-the-counter drugs.

They don’t need to freak out. Everybody gets lice, and if someone around them happens to have lice, that’s OK,” Gonzalez said.
The clinic offers lice checks for $15 and treatments for anywhere from $45 to $200.For parents who are worried about lice, Gonzalez advises them to check kids’ hair at least once a week, use tea tree oil products and tie their kids’ hair up.

For parents who are concerned about lice, Gonzalez advises them to check kids’ hair at least once a week. He also reccomends using tea tree oil products and to tie their kids’ hair up.

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