SCDHEC Head Lice Information for Parents



 Head lice are:

  • common among children ages 3-11.

  • not related to cleanliness/good hygiene.

  • spread by extended direct head to head contact, sharing brushes/combs, or sharing head coverings.

  • totally dependent upon a human host to live and typically die within 24 hours without one.

  • not a public health risk, so there is no need to alert parents of lice cases.                                 

Our district policy:

  • send students home when live lice are found in their hair.

  • prohibits readmission to school without proof of treatment and a lice check by the school nurse or principal's designee.

  • If a student still has living lice, they will be sent back home for further treatment.                                  

 It is not our district's practice to check the heads of all our students in a class or grade. A student may be referred for a lice check if they are continually scratching their head or lice are visible. 



  1. Check your student's head periodically for lice.

  2. Treat the lice infestation if found and remove any nits. (remaining nits can hatch and cause reinfestation)

  3. Wash the bedding and clothing items (sheets, pillows, jackets, hats, etc.) in hot water and dry on high heat.

  4. Vacuum soft household surfaces (mattresses, carpets, couch, etc.)

  5. Check family member's hair and treat if indicated.

  6. Retreat affected family members in 7-10 days (per manufacturers' recommendation) in the event any remaining nits have hatched.