Just last week I blogged about concerns regarding young children handling baby chicks in classrooms. Baby chicks are high-risk animals because of the potential for transmission of Salmonella. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that children less than 5 years of age not have contact with baby chicks for this reason. Unfortunately, few people seem to know this (or at least pay attention to it). If I have a problem with baby chicks in kindergarten classrooms, you can imagine the conniption I have about chicks in preschools. These pictures illustrate my concerns in phenomenal fashion.
If you look closely at this first picture (right), you can see the plop of "chick poop" on this child’s sweater (which he seems all too happy about). The picture is from a blog written by the child’s mother – she gives absolutely no recognition that this is an infectious disease concern.
The second picture (left) is from a news article about a preschool. The preschool obviously has no clue about infectious disease risks because they allowed this c to put the chick on his head and were apparently proud enough of it to have the reporter take a picture.
And last but certainly not least, we have a great picture (below) of a child either kissing a chick or eating very undercooked poultry. Either way, it’s a bad idea. This picture is from another parent’s blog, who apparently thought it was cute.
Baby chicks should not be in preschools – ever. The novelty factor of having chicks in the facility does not supercede the infectious disease risks and recommendations from public health agencies.