The Western Chronicle 20 Mar 1914 Childrens Verminous Heads Batch of Stoke Parents Fined includes Doris MALE Child of Sidney MALE

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The Western Chronicle. (Established in 1764 as the Sherborne, Dorchester, and Taunton Journal). With Which is Incorporated “The Dorset Record.”. Friday 20 Mar 1914
Page 8 Column 3



At the Yeovil County Police court on Friday morning, before Major Quantock SHULDHAM (in the chair), Col. E. H. BERKELEY, Messrs, J. VINCENT[?] and Wm. BART[?], Arthur DODGE, West [?] [?] who was represented by his wife, was summoned for not sending her [?] [?] to school the child being excluded [?] [?] of its verminous condition.

Defendant pleaded not guilty and said the child was sent home because she had a few nits in her head.

Mr. H. W. BAULCH, clerk in the health department of the County Council, produced the certificate of non-attendance.

Nurse M. REECE, a nurse in the employ of the Somerset County Council, said she examined the child at Stoke school on the 15th January. Her head was in a verminous condition.

Defendant: Only nits.

Continuing, the nurse said she saw the child at the same school on 7th February. The head then was in the same state. On the 19th February the child was again examined and the head was then in the same verminous state. The case was reported to the County Medical Officer. On the 2nd of March a further examination was made. The head was still verminous, there being no live lice, but the nits were still there. If her instructions had been carried out there would have been no nits there. The child was therefore excluded from school.

Defendant said she had done everything possible for the child. The nurse had told her to cut the hair off, but she would not do that for 40 nurses; she had done her best for the child and had cut a few nits off.

Fined 5s.

Sidney MALE, High Street, Stoke, was similarly summoned in respect to his child, Doris MALE. - Defendant pleaded not guilty.

The Nurse said she saw Doris MALE at Stoke School on January 15th last, when the head was very verminous. Witness gave the child a green card to take home to its parent. On February 2nd the head was the same and had not altered on February 19th. She reported the case, and on March 2nd, when the head of the child still contained live nits, she was excluded.

By defendant: Did you tell my girl that her head had wonderfully improved? - I don't recollect.

Are you an uncertificated nurse? - No; I am a trained certified nurse.

Defendant: That is all I want to know.

Defendant further stated that his wife had carried out the instructions and the doctor had seen the child and said that it was able to go to school.

The defendant asked that the case be put back to await the attendance of Dr. CASE, of Stoke, which was done, but as he did not appear later, the case was finished and defendant was fined 5s.

Paul WILMINGTON, High Street, Stoke, who did not appear, was likewise charged in respect to two children, and was fined 5s.

Leonard SMITH, Castle Street, Stoke, pleaded not guilty to a similar charge in respect to his two children, Lilian and Brenda.

Nurse REECE said that on her first visit the children's heads were in a terrible state; the lice were dropping about. She gave them a green card, and on the 2nd February and the 19th February there was no improvement. After reporting the case, she saw them again on the 2nd March, when she noticed that the hair had been cut, but there was scarcely a hair that was not loaded by nits.

The case was put back to await the attendance of Dr. CASE, who did not attend, and the defendant was fined 5s.

Alfred WELCH, North Street, Stoke, was also summoned for a like offence.

Defendant pleaded guilty and was fined 5s, and allowed a week to pay.

William GOLD, North St., Stoke, pleaded not guilty to a like offence in respect to his child, Daisy GOLD.

The nurse said that on four visits to Stoke school the child's head was each time very verminous.

Fined 5s.

Edward TOOP, East Street, Stoke, was charged with a similar offence in regard to Dorothy TOOP. Defendant pleaded not guilty.

In this case Nurse REECE said that the child's head was in a very verminous state on each of the three times she visited the school and saw the child and because of it the child was excluded from school.

Fined 5s.

Charles COMER, of the Mason Arms, Ham Ham, was also charged with a like offence, and pleaded not guilty.

Nurse REECE stated that the child's head was verminous on the 15th January and there was no alteration on the 2nd February. On a further visit on February 19th there were numerous nits present, but no live lice. On March 2nd there were still live nits present in the child's head. She pointed out the live nits to Mrs COMER, and explained their colour. Mrs. COMER said that as she had a business to she could not give time to do it and had only partly carried out the directions on the green card. If, added the nurse, the directions on the cards had been carried out the child's head would have been clean.

Asked if he had anything to say, defendant said he was glad that the school was being attended to, as for some time past it had been dreadfully verminous. His child had sat by the side of other children whose heads were in a verminous condition and had seen the lice drop off on the desks. He had had a great deal of trouble to keep the child's head clean, and when he had a magnifying glass, and looked on the child's head, he could see no signs of the nits. For him it was a difficult thing to be brought up for a matter like that.

Fined 5s.

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[NOTES: Sidney MALE son of Robert Thomas MALE and Sarah CALLER, married Eva GAYLARD
Doris Elizabeth MALE daughter of Sidney MALE and Eva GAYLARD]