Any teacher, school administrator, parent or student who has experienced a school lice outbreak knows what a nightmare an epidemic can be. And most would do whatever they could to keep it from happening again.   Avoiding a school-wide outbreak takes the cooperation of school administrators, parents, teachers and kids—each has an important role to play in keeping the classroom bug free. Here are a few steps that can help decrease the incidence of the head louse parasite in schools.   Education. Prevention starts with education. Many people are unaware of what lice are or how they spread. This means that people fail to take the proper precautions and thus open the door to a mass epidemic. School administrators, teachers, parents and kids should all understand the basic facts about lice, how they spread, how they can be prevented and how they should be treated in the event of an infestation. Local lice removal companies often have resources for schools or can come to do in-person head lice education seminars.   At-Home Prevention. Prevention starts at home. Parents can take measures to keep their children lice free with a few easy steps. First, since lice pass head-to-head by traveling up loose strands of hair, it is wise to pull long hair back into a ponytail, braids or a bun. Many parents have also had success by applying hair gel to the hair and by using garlic extract. Rub a few drops into the palms of hands and spread throughout the hair. Lice hate the smell!   Avoid Common Lice-Spreading Behaviors. One of the most common ways these bugs spread is through the sharing of personal belongings. While we love kids to be generous and share with their friends and classmates, when it comes to personal items, this can mean lice. Children should be taught that personal items like hairbrushes, hair accessories, pillows, bedding, hats, scarves and any sports equipment that comes into contact with the head or hair should be for their use only.   School-Wide Screening. Don’t wait until head lice are spreading throughout the school to think about nipping it in the bud. By this time, the problem could be completely out of control. Savvy schools prevent epidemics by scheduling professional school-wide screenings regularly. This facilitates early detection of lice, and if any cases are discovered, parents can be notified and can schedule a professional removal immediately.   Fast, Effective Treatment. Many parents unwittingly promote the spread of lice by employing ineffective methods of treatment. They apply a lice shampoo and assume the problem is taken care of. However, over-the-counter and even prescription treatments have been proven to be largely ineffective in the treatment and eradication of lice. They’re also toxic and potentially dangerous. Skip the chemicals and the messy home remedies and call the lice experts. With one safe, pesticide free treatment, your household is 100% lice free. That keeps your school lice free too.   For more information, or to schedule an appointment, house call, school or camp consultation, please visit our website at: or call 1-800-403-LICE.   Our Miami treatment center locations are here to serve you:   Bay Harbor Lice Treatment Center, 1005 Kane Concourse, Suite 212, Bay Harbor Island, FL 33154   Coral Gables Lice Treatment Clinic, 2100 Ponce De Leon Blvd, Coral Gables, FL 33154   Hollywood Treatment Center, 5735 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, FL 33021