Archive for December, 2008

No Nits?

Tuesday, December 30th, 2008

no nitsCan a super strict school policy stop Super Lice? No Nits Policies at schools have tended to result in more missed days of school and in more missed days of work for parents. The policies have been around long enough for some people to say with authority that they don’t work. Here is a rundown of what concerned parties have to say about No Nits Policies


Although having 5 or more nits within one fourth inch of the scalp was a risk factor for conversion, most children with nits alone did not become infested. Policies requiring exclusion from school and treatment for all children with nits alone are likely excessive. Instead, these children may benefit from repeated examination to exclude the presence of crawling lice.*

*PEDIATRICS Vol. 107 No. 5 May 2001, pp. 1011-1015
Lice, Nits, and School Policy


It is the position of the National Association of School Nurses that the management of pediculosis should not disrupt the education process. Children found with live head lice should be referred to parents for treatment. Data does not support school exclusion for nits.*

*From position statement of the National Association of School Nurses

The National Pediculosus Association (they wrote the policy):

The No Nit Policy encourages each family to do its part at home with routine screening, early detection, accurate identification and thorough removal of lice and nits. Establishing consistent guidelines and educating the public about procedures in advance of outbreaks helps minimize inappropriate responses.

Parents are likely to have to deal with lice at least once regardless of what kind of policies their schools choose to implement. To learn how to get rid of Super Lice go to


Tuesday, December 30th, 2008

Seth Godin was riffing on the concept of expertise and passion today. He was basically making the argument that some positions in an organization do not have to be filled by people who are driven by a passion for the product that is being produced. I concur with that and I have a personal story to support it.

Several years ago, I left my soul sucking job at a huge sawmill for a job as the roaster at a fair trade coffee cooperative. I have some enthusiasm for coffee (the tangible product) and also for social justice (the intangible product), but I wasn’t extremely PASSIONATE about either. My skills were developing efficient systems, performing repetitive tasks efficiently and implementing quality control.

The man and wife founders are PASSIONATE about their products. When their baby of a company outgrew mom and pop style management, one of them bit the bullet and went to school to learn how to be a general manager. I was with the company during a period of major growth. When I recently checked on its progress I was pleased to see that it appears to be thriving in ways that I couldn’t have predicted three years ago.

I can’t think of any instances where slightly mismatched worldviews caused problems between me and my coffee-making coworkers. When the entire production crew was given the day off to support and participate in an anti-Bush demonstration, I chose to stay at the roastery and perform some maintenance. For the record, I am not a fan of GWB. I just chose not to protest a foreign leader who was on an official visit to my country. That, and it was time to sweep the chimneys.

Avoid Accidentally Sending Unfinished Email

Tuesday, December 30th, 2008

It doesn’t matter if it is business or personal. Accidentally sending an email that you have not finished writing is embarrassing and potentially damaging to your personal life and/or career.

I just made this mistake three minutes ago, possibly for the first time ever. I was belaboring the process because someone was having hurt feelings and I am always uncomfortable about that kind of thing. Belaboring for me involves saving drafts and surfing the net while I procrastinate. The last words that I typed were ‘Please don’t’ , it doesn’t get much more awkward than that. I pressed send instead of save. Save is the word I would use to describe the very quickly written follow up email.

Catherine told me after the fact that she often leaves the ‘To’ field blank in order to avoid this kind of accident. That’s very good advice.