Healthy Snack Program

The Healthy Snack program at Paris Central offers a variety of nut free snack foods to all students at the school during nutritional breaks, at no cost to the students. Brant Food for Thought is a non-profit organization that facilitates and supports student nutrition programs in the elementary and secondary schools in Brantford and in the County of Brant. Brant Food for Thought donates thousands of dollars to our school each year for the Healthy Snack program. The Paris Optimist Club also generously donates additional funds to our school to assist with this great program.

Special thanks to the very special volunteers who prepare the food on a daily basis for the children. If you have the desire to help out at the school, being a volunteer with our Healthy Snack Program is one way you can help without making a huge time commitment. Please contact the school for more information.

A few examples of the snacks offered include, but are not limited to:

  • fresh fruit (apples, clementines, bananas, grapes)
  • baby carrots
  • yogurt and cheese.

Why Student Nutrition Programs?

Did you know…

  • 42% of students report they do not eat in the morning every day?
  • 36% of students do not eat the recommended 3 servings or more of milk products daily?
  • 45% of students do not eat the recommended minimum 5 servings daily of vegetables and fruit?

Student Health Survey, 2003—Brant, Haldimand and Norfolk

Studies show that children and youth who are well-nourished perform better at school and are able to concentrate longer. Undernourished children have lower self-esteem, difficulty concentrating, and are absent more often. Providing a universal student nutrition program does more than just alleviate in-school hunger. Student nutrition programs are beneficial in many ways. They help to:

  • Contribute to child’s overall health
  • Improve students’ cognitive performance and their educational achievement
  • Improve classroom behaviour
  • Provide a safety net for children and youth who may be at risk of not eating an adequate breakfast in the morning because they are not hungry, their parents are not home, breakfast may be a low priority, or there may be financial concerns
  • Provide a vehicle for delivering nutrition education and consistent healthy eating messages
  • Foster a sense of community by providing a way to involve the parents of school children and other agencies (Creating a Healthy School Nutrition Environment: A Resource for School Decision Makers, Brant County Health Unit, 2005)

Head Lice - a pesky problem

Pediculosis or head lice is a nuisance rather than a health problem. The GEDSB has a NO NIT policy (Procedure SO101) that Paris Central School upholds. The policy states that we are to exclude from school property students who show any evidence of head lice (live or nits). It is important to check your children's head regularly for head lice.

Affected children will be referred to the office. The Secretary will phone home to inform you of the need to treat your child. You are also asked to contact the school if there is a case in your family. It is the responsibility of parents/guardians to ensure that their children are properly and thoroughly treated, and nit free before returning to school.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are Head Lice?

Head lice are tiny insects that are sometimes found on the heads of people. Having head lice is very common. Head lice occur regardless of socioeconomic status or hygienic living conditions. Infested children usually carry fewer than 20 mature head lice (more commonly, less than 10), each of which, if untreated, live for 3 to 4 weeks. Head lice usually stay close to the scalp for food, warmth, shelter and moisture. The head louse feeds every 3 to 6 hours by sucking blood and simultaneously injecting saliva. After mating, the adult female louse can produce 5 to 6 eggs per day for 30 days, each in a shell (a nit) that is ‘glued’ to the hair shaft near the scalp. The eggs hatch about 10 days later into nymphs that become adult lice within 9 to 15 days. Nymphs and adult head lice can survive for up to 3 days away from the human host. While eggs can survive away from the host for up to 3 days, they require the higher temperature found near the scalp to hatch.

What do head lice look like?

Head lice, or pediculus humanus capitis can be found in three forms: the nit, the nymph, and the adult. Head lice are wingless, six-legged, blood-sucking insects. The adult louse is 2-4 mm long; about the size of a sesame seed. They live on the scalp of humans. Head lice cannot hop, fly or jump. Head lice only move by crawling.

  • Nit: Nits are head lice eggs. They are hard to see and are often confused for dandruff or hair spray droplets. Nits are found firmly attached to the hair shaft. They are oval and usually yellow to white. Nits take about 1 week to hatch.
  • Nymph: The nit hatches into a baby louse called a nymph. It looks like an adult head louse, but smaller. Nymphs mature into adults about 7 days after hatching. To live, the nymph must feed on blood.
  • Adult: The adult louse is about the size of a sesame seed, has six legs, and is tan to grayish-white. Adult lice can live up to 30 days on a person's head. To live, adult lice need to feed on blood. If the louse falls off a person, it will die within 2 days.

Where are head lice most commonly found?

On the scalp behind the ears and near the neckline at the back of the neck.

What are the signs and symptoms of head lice infestation?

A tickling feeling of something moving in the hair. Itching, caused by the allergic reaction to the bites. Irritability. Sores on the head caused by scratching. These sores can sometimes become infected.

How did my child get head lice? How do they spread?

Head lice are spread mainly through direct head-to-head (hair-to-hair) contact. Contact is common during play at school and home (slumber parties, sports activities, at camp, on a playground). Head lice can also be spread by wearing infested clothing, such as hats, scarves, coats, sports uniforms, or hair ribbons, or by using infested combs, brushes, or towels, by lying on a bed, couch, pillow, carpet, or stuffed animal recently in contact with an infested person. Head lice cannot hop, fly or jump, they can only move by crawling. They do crawl quickly!

How is head lice infestation diagnosed?

By looking closely through the hair and scalp for nits, nymphs, or adults. Finding a nymph or adult may be difficult; there are usually only a few of them, and they can move quickly from searching fingers. If crawling lice are not seen, finding nits also confirms that a person is infested and should be treated.

How can I treat for head lice? How do I get rid of them?

By treating the infested person, any other infested family members, and by cleaning clothing and bedding.

Step 1: Treat the infested person/any infested family members: Get a head lice shampoo, conditioner or both from a pharmacy.

Step 2: Remove the nits: Head lice shampoos and cream rinses will kill most of the nits (eggs), but one treatment usually does not kill them all. Bright, natural light helps you to see the nits better. Comb the hair, and then take a hold of a group of hair. Use your thumbnail against your finger to strip the nits from the hair, starting from the roots right down to the tips. Place the nits in a bag and throw it away when you are done. Pin back that grouping of hair and keep going until all nits are removed. Try to remove the very tiny eggs laid right next to the scalp. You may also comb out the nits by holding a fine-toothed comb at a downward angle. This is easier if you use conditioner after treatment. (Do not use conditioner after using NIX). Some plastic or metal fine-toothed combs work better than others.

Step 3: Treat the household: To kill lice and nits, machine-wash all washable clothing and bed linens that the infested person touched during the 2 days before treatment. Use the hot water cycle (55ºC or 130ºF) to wash clothes. Dry laundry using the hot cycle for at least 20 minutes. Dry clean clothing that is not washable (coats, hats, scarves, etc.). Store all clothing, stuffed animals, comforters, etc., that cannot be washed or dry cleaned in a plastic bag and seal it for 2 weeks. Soak combs and brushes for 1 hour in rubbing alcohol, Lysol, or wash with soap and hot (55ºC or 130ºF) water. Vacuum the floor and furniture. It is not necessary to fumigate your house.

My child has head lice. I don't. Should I treat myself to prevent being infested?

No, although anyone living with an infested person can get head lice. Have another person check the back and sides of your head for lice and nits. Check family members for lice and nits every 2-3 days. Treat only if crawling lice or nits are found.

Is there a product I can use to prevent getting head lice?

No.

Should my pets be treated for head lice?

No. Head lice do not live on pets.

My child is under 2 years old and has been diagnosed with head lice. Can I treat him or her with prescription or OTC drugs?

No. For children less than 2 years old, remove crawling bugs and nits by hand. If the problem persists, consult your family doctor.

When Treating Head Lice

  • Do not use extra amounts of the lice medication unless instructed. Drugs are insecticides and can be dangerous when misused or overused.
  • Do not treat the infested person more than 3 times with the same medication. If the medication does not seem to work, see your health care provider or pharmacist for another medication.
  • Do not mix head lice medications.
  • Head lice that are left untreated may spread to others
  • Check school-age children regularly for head lice, more often if there is an outbreak
  • Head lice do not live on dogs, cats or other animals, only on humans
  • Discourage children from sharing hats, scarves, combs and helmets
  • Keeping hair short will not prevent head lice

Information from the Brant County Health Unit and Canadian Pediatric Society.