Pearland ISD staff does not routinely screen for head lice. If there is a suspected case, the nurse or healthcare assistant will perform a head check on the student and follow up with a phone call to the parent if live lice are found. Texas Education Code, Section 38.031 requires all parents of children in an elementary classroom where head lice are discovered to be notified. No personal information will be released.
Head lice is common among school-aged children, does not cause disease and is not a public health hazard.
Head lice are most commonly spread by direct head-to-head contact, and are proven to have low contagion in classrooms (American Academy of Pediatrics). Lice do not fly, and their specially adapted feet make jumping impossible and holding on to smooth surfaces like plastic or metal (i.e. helmets or headphones) very difficult. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the potential spread due to contact with an infested person’s clothing or other personal items (such as hats, scarves, coats, combs, brushes or towels) is very uncommon, and hygiene/cleanliness in the home or school has nothing to do with getting head lice.
Prevention is focused on avoiding head-to-head contact (common during play at home, child care, school, sports activities, playgrounds, slumber parties and camps) and by prompt treatment of infested persons.
Pearland ISD follows Texas Department of State Health Services guidelines when managing head lice. Mass screenings including individual classroom checks are not conducted.
For more informationon how to prevent or treat headlice, refer to the linked resources in Quick Links on the right side of this page.
Please contact your school clinic with any questions or concerns.