TDSB won’t nitpick over the issue of lice

Toronto, January 15 (CINEWS): Up until now, if your child was discovered to have head lice, he or she’d be sent home and told never to return until the lice problem was eradicated. The strict “no nits” policy is currently under review after the Toronto Public Health updated its recommendation about how to handle lice.Lice_Jan15
This relaxation has prompted the Toronto District School Board to review its long-standing policy and perhaps consider not excluding children with lice infestation from attending class.
Lice are a common problem among young children and can spread rapidly in a classroom by sharing items like hats, brushes or combs.
The Durham District School Board, Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board, Halton Catholic District School Board, and York Catholic District School Board all follow “no nit” policies which bar students with lice from attending school until they’ve been cleared by an approved screening agency.
The Toronto Catholic School Board said the board follows the direction of Toronto Public Health and that there was “no reason to exclude students with head lice from school.”
The board’s January newsletter to parents contained an article entitled ‘Nits are a nuisance, not a barrier to learning’ that stated that starting this month, the board would be allowing students with lice to attend school regularly so they could continue to learn.
The news was met with widespread disapproval from parents who were divided by the new policy. Aruna M, a mother of two tweens believed that if a child had lice, it should be the responsibility of the parents to ensure they are gone rather than send their child to school and risk spreading lice in the classroom. “It’s a matter of hygiene and if one or two children with lice are allowed to stay in class, scratch their heads and risk spreading them to the other students, is that fair? The child with lice will have a hard time concentrating in the classroom and should be treated before being let in,” she said.
While many parents admit that having lice should not be equated with having flu or a case of cough and cold, it can still give parents of those who inadvertently catch a lice infestation nightmares trying to get rid of it.

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