Pediculosis (Head Lice) Fact Sheet
As you may be aware, pediculosis (head lice) is a problem that all schools and camps face each year. It is an uncomfortable topic to discuss but one which camp feels is important to address. Camp takes every instance of lice very seriously and takes numerous precautions to prevent its spread. The JCC Camps at Medford has a strict head lice policy in effect and has been very successful in limiting the exposure of its campers and staff. This policy is for the protection of all campers, staff members, and families and we regret any inconvenience it may cause. Your support and cooperation in this matter is appreciated.
For Your Information:
- Head lice is not an issue of social class or of cleanliness or hygiene, and can never be fully prevented. Though not a life-threatening illness, it is highly communicable and presents a great nuisance to individuals and their families, as well as to camp.
- Parents are asked to check their children* prior to sending them to camp (if possible, each day) and are asked not to send them if they are found to be affected. Parents are also asked to report all cases of head lice to the camp nursing staff as soon as possible, including instances in which the child contracts lice while outside of camp (i.e. weekends/evenings).
- If a camper or staff member is found to have head lice in camp, he/she will be requested to leave camp as soon as possible. Parents/Guardians will be notified and must provide immediate transportation home for their children (no one with head lice will be permitted to ride the camp bus), and receive a sheet that provides details for eliminating lice from their child.
- As a precaution, the entire bunk of the individual found with head lice is immediately checked, and a letter is sent home, informing parents that a case of lice was reported in their child’s bunk, asking them to assist us by being alert and aware. Also, if there is a sibling in camp, he/she is checked as well.
- After proper treatment, and all nits are removed, the camper/staff may return to camp. However, on the first day back individual transportation must be provided. (Camp buses may not be used). The camper/staff member once at camp must go directly to the nursing office for a thorough hair examination (campers may not report to their bunk first)! If the camp nurses upon examination find nits, the camper/staff member will not be allowed to remain in camp. If the individual is found to be free of nits then he/she may return to regular camp activities, and may also travel to and from camp by bus.
- For the next three (3) consecutive days the camper/staff member after arriving at camp, will report to the nursing office for follow-up hair exams. Please make sure your child and bus counselor know to report to the nurses office prior to reporting to the bunk. (This is only a precautionary measure).
- In most cases, rumors of lice are exaggerated or prove to be false alarms, and cause undue reaction by parents. This is one of the reasons that Camp does not report each instance of lice to parents – parents are informed only if it impacts their child. Camp does not conduct checks in instances when no cause has been found.
- No refunds will be made for absences or withdrawals during the camp sessions, including for lice or other medical conditions
This policy has been written in accordance with the guidelines set forth by several New Jersey school systems, by the New Jersey State Board of Health, and after review by the JCC Camps at Medford Camp Committee. For more information, or if you have any questions or concerns regarding this policy or other camp issues, please contact the camp office and we will be happy to assist you. Thank you again for your cooperation and understanding.
* What to look for: tiny yellowish oval specks, adhering to the hair about ¼ inch from the scalp, that do not move easily. If you find these “nits” please contact us and we will give you information how to properly get rid of them.