Capstone Courses and Projects

Analysis of Lice Policies in Indiana Elementary Schools
The presence of lice is a public nuisance, the impact of which extends beyond the scalp. Not only can treating lice be costly with treatments ranging from $10 to $100, but also students may miss multiple days of school as a result of strict lice policies, thereby impacting their performance and potentially affecting a school’s ability to meet standards dictated by No Child Left Behind. Additionally, the Food and Drug Administration has criticized the safety of some lice treatments. Thus, lice present a serious concern for parents, educators, and public health officials. Schools differ in the type of policies and procedures they adopt to address lice with variation in screening procedures, treatment requirements, and dismissal and return protocols. The Capstone team’s analysis examines the association between various lice policies and student attendance rates in Indiana elementary schools as a step to better understand the impact lice has on children in the U.S. as a whole.