A bill that prohibits kids with "contagious diseases" and head lice from attending school faced a full repeal in the House Public Health Committee Wednesday...
The bill's repeal goes hand-in-hand with the passage of HB 3145, which was sponsored by Rep. Kevin West.
HB 3145 changes quarantine rules for "communicable diseases". It says "no person having a communicable disease shall be permitted to attend a private or public school."
Rep. West said "communicable diseases" had a better definition than "contagious diseases", hence why he wanted to repeal HB 3159 and just stick with HB 3145.
I was going to bring up some points about why this seems dumb, but then I realized Oklahoma lawmakers are experts at spreading both communicable and contagious diseases, especially of the sexually transmitted variety, so I figured I should stay in my lane and trust the experts on this one.
That being said, communicable and contagious diseases aside, why are we giving lice a pass? Did the Lice, Scabies and Bed Buggies lobby – L.S.B.B for short – finally get to Oklahoma lawmakers?
As for head lice, the CDC says children diagnosed with an infestation do not need to be sent home early from school. Instead, the CDC recommends children go home at the end of the day, get treated, and return to class after the appropriate treatment has begun.
The CDC also says head lice can be a "nuisance," but aren't known to spread disease.
Wow. Look at Oklahoma lawmakers following the advice of the CDC for once!
Anyway, I know we've made a lot of technological advancements in lice treatment over the years with special medicines, shampoos and combs, but I think I speak for all people with head lice and without it, that maybe it's okay for a kid to stay at home for a day or two when they have a colony of insects nesting in their hair. You know, just to be safe. Who's it going to hurt, outside of a few lice looking for a new head to call home?