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Sign the on-line petition if you believe PUSD should revert to the prior lice policy and communicate to parents in the class

Original post made by petition, Another Pleasanton neighborhood, on Feb 28, 2013

See this KTVU news story Web Link

If you are interested in PUSD going back to the old policy notifying parents that lice was found in your child's classroom so that you can check your own children for lice, please sign the petition and let your voice be heard.

The change in policy to keep parents in the dark and not notify parents in the classroom if lice is found was not announced nor was it vetted by the School Board.

To sign the petition, click here: Web Link

Comments (24)

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Sam
a resident of Oak Hill
on Feb 28, 2013 at 7:20 am

Well, I understand both points of view on this matter. Again, as I mentioned on the previous thread about the head lice policy, PUSD is following the recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) on this. The CDC in turn points to the recommendations of the American Association of Pediatrics and the National Association of School Nurses. (CDC Head Lice web page: Web Link).


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Posted by well
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 8:09 am

No where in your link does it say that you should not inform the parents in the class. That is the key here - people need to know to watch out, especially with the younger ones, because if a child has lice and doesn't know, there is a good chance they can pass it to others in school or at playdates.

If the schools wants to allow the kids to come to school after they've been treated, fine, but they still need to inform parents.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 28, 2013 at 8:18 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Just one question about notifications, is a single notification enough? I would agree notification is easily done, but if you find one student and send a notice and then find two more students three weeks later, are we asking the school to renotify, or will you consider it part of the original notification? It helps to be clear about what we are asking the schools to do.


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Posted by petition
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 8:34 am

The petition is to revert to the previous policy and when lice is found in the classroom, that a letter will be sent home like it was in the past, because it is every parent's right to know what is going on in the classroom including outbreaks of lice. That way, the parents will know to check their children for lice because lice is easily spread in the classroom, recess and the playground. It is also easily spread by backpacks and jackets touching each other hanging on hooks.

The new policy says parents in the classroom will not be notified. Ridiculous.


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Posted by Sam
a resident of Oak Hill
on Feb 28, 2013 at 8:53 am

"Well" wrote: "No where in your link does it say that you should not inform the parents in the class. That is the key here - people need to know to watch out, especially with the younger ones, because if a child has lice and doesn't know, there is a good chance they can pass it to others in school or at playdates."

"If the schools wants to allow the kids to come to school after they've been treated, fine, but they still need to inform parents."

There are two separate issues here, aren't there?" (1) The removal of the "no-nits-or-child-must-stay-out-of-class" policy and (2) whether or not parents should be informed.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Amy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 8:58 am

I too think there should be follow up to the first notice, as well as perhaps a slate of penalties. For if the parents were negligent the first time around, what's to prevent them from continuing their negligence? First notice should be accompanied by automatic one week suspension of child. Second notice a month suspension. Third notice suspension for a year. Notices moreover should have required follow up at the home with health official and, perhaps where warranted, a team of exterminators.

The child should not be made to suffer as it is the parents' fault. We are living in a sea of unpaid debt, unfunded liabilities, on account of outrageous teacher salaries and pensions. Negligent parents of the lice or nit ridden child should be made to face a fine. $500 for first offense. $2000 for second offense. $5000 for third offense, This might better help to alleviate the problem while the district finds other ways to cope with the mountainous wave of unfunded liabilities brought to us by the teachers union.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 28, 2013 at 9:09 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

"Amy" -- cut the c--- There are some concerned parents. They would like to go back to the previous rules. They can appeal and the chips will fall where they may.


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Posted by Amy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 9:14 am

I don't think bullying a person you disagree with is very appropriate Kathleen. My hands are shaking right now.


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Posted by Concerned parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 9:22 am

Get ready for an outbreak of lice in Pleasanton. A child with lice will be allowed to remain in school until the end of the day? Do you know how many kids can get lice in that time? And then those newly infested kids can give it to others outside of school...

I say let's withhold all donations to PUSD, PPIE, until the school district goes back to the old lice policy.

And parents: do not reimburse PUSD for days of school missed. Let's let our wallets talk, and also sign the petition.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 28, 2013 at 9:31 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

So you agree you were bullying these parents. Thank you.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Amy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 9:38 am

Don't try to pull the wool over are eyes Kathleen you know you're the bully. You're acting like this board belongs to you and you alone and its doesn't and I'm going to say that LOUD AND CLEAR.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Concerned parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 9:39 am

A good reason to sign the petition:

"In the past, over-the-counter products like Nix and RID have been effective, but now many cases are becoming drug resistant, so head lice outbreaks like the one in Idaho are on the rise. "

Web Link

I also read that tea tree oil is a good repelent for lice, as these bugs don't like the smell. It is worth a try, there are some tea tree oil shampoos out there.

Right now at Lydkinsen elementary, there were kids with lice, so there is a current lice situation in Pleasanton.

I cannot believe that PUSD is acting in such an irresponsible way.

By the way Sam, the CDC also says "Head lice can be a nuisance." So they know what a pain it is to have these bugs, and yet they don't want people to take steps to prevent the spread of lice! And PUSD does not have to follow their guidelines, since CDC is very clear that school districts have the final say about what lice policy to implement.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by well
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 9:51 am

Sam - you're exactly right. And number 2 is what people seem to be most concerned about - the lack of communication.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 28, 2013 at 10:04 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

It isn't bullying to agree with these parents that a simple notification has benefits for students and their families, as well as the classroom and school. I agree.

It also isn't bullying to merely state you disagree. Suggesting one year suspensions for children and $5,000 fees for parents, etc., bullying.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Amy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 10:10 am

Commanding another poster to cut the you know what is bullying. My recommendation might differ in some respects for you're own but I don't deserve to be talked down to like that. Your a bully Kathlleen and don't try to put this off on me. I'm VERY angry right now.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 28, 2013 at 10:32 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

I'm happy to talk to you about this off line if you wish.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Andrew
a resident of Lydiksen Elementary School
on Feb 28, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Amy, I'm probably not alone in thinking that you are owed an apology. Sometimes people go overboard, maybe because they care too much, or maybe just that they have that kind of a personality. Either way it's inexcusable, and certain contributors should learn to restrain themselves and their language.

I think your position generally a good one though a bit too extreme. Instead of the $500, $2000, $5000 fines that you advocate, I'd say maybe a first time warning would be adequate, and then a $500 fine if the parents don't comply. The $500 fine for the 2nd offense and perhaps a $1000 fine for the chronic offenders, and there are probably many out there, could be put into a fund for the district-supervised exterminator services that may be needed.

Fines, moderately graduated and rational relative to the seriousness of the offense, are a useful tool both as incentive to people to get their children and households cleaned up and disincentive to people who tend to be lax in the way they oversee the health and grooming habits of their children.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Sam
a resident of Oak Hill
on Feb 28, 2013 at 12:29 pm

Well, as usual this discussion thread has degenerated into a lot of silly and stupid comments. I won't bother to identify particular posts, and I'm not going to bother arguing back and forth. There's just no cure for "stupid".

Anyone who wants to learn more about what informed health experts think about head lice prevention, treatment, and school policy can google the information put out by the American Association of Pediatrics and the National Association of School Nurses.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 28, 2013 at 12:54 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

It is unlikely that you could suspend students for without children being "made to suffer." In addition, it would hurt the classroom/school in lost funding. Those kinds of suspensions and the suggested fines up to $5,000 are likely not enforceable.

Asking the district to maintain a notice of this kind of outbreak in a classroom, in my opinion, is not unreasonable. The impact to students in lost school time (and again, funding for the schools) is easily mitigated with a note. I believe it's just a request to maintain a past practice.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Concerned parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 2:44 pm

Sam, I do not understand why you put so much faith in the "experts." You seem like a fairly smart person, and as such, should not rely so much on the so called experts.

Just think: The American Academy of Pediatrics has changed its mind often in the past. Just look at circumcision: first it was recommended, then it changed in 1999, and now in 2012, back again recommending it.

When we get an outbreak of lice and entire schools are affected, we will probably see another shift in the AAP recommendations. But it will be a while, right?

I hope your family does not get lice, but if you do, you will change your mind, because it is a big effort to get rid of these bugs. And now that the permethrin and those milder options do not work as well because the bugs became resistant, well, good luck.

With CSR gone (did you see the post about the board spending millions to hire more administrators and others?) we have crowded classrooms, and now with the lice policy... this is awful!

Parents: please sign the petition, and be careful around Lydkinsen Elementary students, as there is definitely lice going around.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Concerned parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 28, 2013 at 2:53 pm

Here is what Palo Alto Unified School district says about lice on their website:

"Lice are common age-old pests that are easily transferred from person to person. All age groups and localities are susceptible. PAUSD has a "No Nits" policy. You will be informed of procedures and policy if your child should become infected. If you discover a lice problem, please call your school office to help us keep the problem under control. Occasional lice checks will be conducted at your school throughout the year. "

Web Link

Now that is a good school district! And the PUSD board wonders why Palo Alto can pass a parcel tax but not Pleasanton? Well, parents who trust the administration and board are more likely to support a parcel tax. But who can trust a group of administrators and board members who make the worse decisions?

Stop donations, Pleasanton parents, send a loud message to this district!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Oh have I Been There
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 2, 2013 at 11:16 pm

The funny thing is that pinworm is just as easy for children to pick up in school as lice is, but I've never known schools to check children for it. Yikes! Now that would be something, wouldn't it ; /

When my kids were in school, we were informed whenever there was a contagious outbreak of anything: whooping cough, chicken pox, pinworm, lice etc. No one knew who had it but parents had a 'heads up" to be on the lookout for symptoms so they could deal with it. That seems to be a logical way to deal with childhood contagions. Parents felt more secure in reporting their child's health problem because no one was finger-pointing.

No hysteria. Just communication.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Concerned parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Mar 3, 2013 at 6:54 am

"The funny thing is that pinworm is just as easy for children to pick up in school as lice is, but I've never known schools to check children for it. Yikes! Now that would be something, wouldn't it ; /"

Pinworms are due to poor hygiene, whereas lice are not. Someone has to come in contact with an egg (pinworm) and then somehow manage to get that into their mouth in order for the egg to enter the intestines. And the eggs from a person are found in areas where you should not be able to come in contact with unless there is absolutely poor hygiene on the part of the infected person.

Good hygiene, at school and personal prevents pinworms. And no, you cannot check for pinworms, as that involve private areas. A friend's kid contracted pinworms during an exchange program in Latin America, that is how we know about this. And yes, poor hygiene played a role.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Fact Checker
a resident of Downtown
on Mar 6, 2013 at 11:22 pm

Withhold donations? Yeah, that will show them! Not. Let's advocate for what we believe without punishing the kids by not getting the funding they deserve. PPIE is finishing up their annual drive, please give generously. Our kids deserve to have the best education and PPIE is working to restore programs that have been cut. Find out more at ppie.org


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