School Nurse Questions

  1. 0 I have never been to this portion of the forum, so forgive me if this questions has been asked.

    I'm experiencing an emergency at my son's school. We have discovered the school is in dire straits and many employees are doing their job, plus others.

    The school nurse, who was a licensed RN, has quit I've been told. She was fabulous, but also doubled as the part-time school receptionist.

    We were never notified that she was no longer with the school. I found out when my son was taken to the office. Apparently I wasn't supposed to know either, as several teachers lied to me regarding her whereabouts.

    Here are my questions:

    1) Do private schools require the school nurse to have an RN? LPN? I cannot find this current "nurse" listed under either of these two searches.

    2) Is the school nurse required to be available at all times? Several students could not be seen immediately who required treatment as the nurse was "teaching his class".

    3) Is the school required to notify parents of a new nurse replacing the old?

    Thanks for any help you can offer!
  2. Visit  KristinWW profile page

    About KristinWW

    Joined May '03; Posts: 445; Likes: 5.

    7 Comments so far...

  3. Visit  KristinWW profile page
    0
    Upon reviewing the school's literature, I find the statement that the school is staffed with a full-time RN. So what happens if the RN is teaching? I guess he is still considered full-time as he is on the school premises, but isn't the implication that the RN is available during all school hours?
  4. Visit  DeeDee71 profile page
    0
    As far as I know schools are not required to have a nurse. I've never seen a law stating that. I know a lot of place are cutting nurses due to budget cuts. W do have one district south of where I live that has 4 or 5 towns in the district with only one nurse. So if there is an emergancy in one of the school the nurse could be 30-45 min. away.
  5. Visit  KristinWW profile page
    0
    Quote from DeeDee71
    As far as I know schools are not required to have a nurse. I've never seen a law stating that. I know a lot of place are cutting nurses due to budget cuts. W do have one district south of where I live that has 4 or 5 towns in the district with only one nurse. So if there is an emergancy in one of the school the nurse could be 30-45 min. away.
    Thanks for your reply, DeeDee. You are correct - private schools here are not required to have a nurse onsite. Times have changed since I was young. However, there are different requirements for public schools.
  6. Visit  bergren profile page
    0
    Some states do mandate school nurses. Some mandate a school nurse in every school with a minimum level of education, others mandate one per district - which can be 1 nurse to 10,000 - that was the worst I ever heard. The National Association of School Nursing and Healthy People 2010 recommended 1:750 well children, 1:250 chronically ill children, and 1:125 medically fragile children. The minimum level of education recommended by NASN is a BSN, however, many states do not require extra training or a college degree. Some states do not require an RN, an LPN is sufficient. In California, an MSN is required.

    Florida does not mandate school nurses, nor do they mandate a minimum level of education to be a school nurse. However, the school should have notified the parents that there was a change, and either temporarily or permanently, that there was no longer a nurse at the school - I would think that this, and the decision NOT to replace her, would have been public domain as part of a school board meeting. I am not sure how you found out the teachers lied to you, but in many schools, the teachers simply may not have been told the straight scoop.

    Parent protests and demands for nursing coverage are often the best way to reinstate nursing coverage in a school. Research has shown that non-licensed personnel in schools send children home at a significantly higher rate than RNs. RNs have assessment skills that allow them to determine if somatic complaints are supported by physical symptoms. RNs, therefore, contribute to less time out of class and fewer inappropriate calls to mom at work that an aide or a secretary. These are issues of importance to all parents, those who care about child education and achievement, and to employers in the community - I do think you could get a grassroots campaign going to get nursing coverage back in your building.

    The following persons may be able to help you.

    Florida Association of School Nurses

    NASN Director
    Florrie Deaner, RN, MSN, NCSN
    Florence_Deaner@doh.state.fl.us

    Association President
    Corinne Nelson
    corinneN@lee.k12.fl.us

    Executive Community Health Nursing Director, Department of Health
    Sylvia F. Byrd, ARNP, MPH, NCSN
    sylvia_byrd@doh.state.fl.us

    School Nurse Consultant, University of South Florida (in collaboration with the Florida Department of Education)
    Dianne Mennitt
    dmennitt@tempest.coedu.usf.edu
  7. Visit  KristinWW profile page
    1
    Quote from bergren
    Some states do mandate school nurses. Some mandate a school nurse in every school with a minimum level of education, others mandate one per district - which can be 1 nurse to 10,000 - that was the worst I ever heard. The National Association of School Nursing and Healthy People 2010 recommended 1:750 well children, 1:250 chronically ill children, and 1:125 medically fragile children. The minimum level of education recommended by NASN is a BSN, however, many states do not require extra training or a college degree. Some states do not require an RN, an LPN is sufficient. In California, an MSN is required.

    Florida does not mandate school nurses, nor do they mandate a minimum level of education to be a school nurse. However, the school should have notified the parents that there was a change, and either temporarily or permanently, that there was no longer a nurse at the school - I would think that this, and the decision NOT to replace her, would have been public domain as part of a school board meeting. I am not sure how you found out the teachers lied to you, but in many schools, the teachers simply may not have been told the straight scoop.

    Parent protests and demands for nursing coverage are often the best way to reinstate nursing coverage in a school. Research has shown that non-licensed personnel in schools send children home at a significantly higher rate than RNs. RNs have assessment skills that allow them to determine if somatic complaints are supported by physical symptoms. RNs, therefore, contribute to less time out of class and fewer inappropriate calls to mom at work that an aide or a secretary. These are issues of importance to all parents, those who care about child education and achievement, and to employers in the community - I do think you could get a grassroots campaign going to get nursing coverage back in your building.

    The following persons may be able to help you.

    Florida Association of School Nurses

    NASN Director
    Florrie Deaner, RN, MSN, NCSN
    Florence_Deaner@doh.state.fl.us

    Association President
    Corinne Nelson
    corinneN@lee.k12.fl.us

    Executive Community Health Nursing Director, Department of Health
    Sylvia F. Byrd, ARNP, MPH, NCSN
    sylvia_byrd@doh.state.fl.us

    School Nurse Consultant, University of South Florida (in collaboration with the Florida Department of Education)
    Dianne Mennitt
    dmennitt@tempest.coedu.usf.edu
    Thanks for the info, but I had to make an immediate decision for my son's sake and decided to pull him out. How did I discover the teachers were covering? Once my son was hurt in school I received a call from a young kid who said he worked "in the clinic". I then called the school's front office and asked to speak to the regular nurse. I was told she was no longer with the school and that I would be transferred to the "clinic coordinator" and gave me his name. I specifically asked if he was a nurse, to which the school administrator replied, "of course".

    The following week another incident occurred where my son was injured in school, and no one contacted me from the school. On pick-up, I said to two teachers separately if they contacted the nurse (and I used the old nurse's name) during the day to see the injury. They both said, "of course, we always do."

    I began to investigate on my own and that's when I discovered that the school was losing large amounts of students and was in fear of closing. I also contacted the FL Dept of Health, the FL Board of Nursing, and the FL Board of Education. All three were very helpful and gave me answers to every question.

    It's a scary concept that FL does not require school nurses. Do you know which other states do not? Is the list long? Does PA?
    elprup likes this.
  8. Visit  bergren profile page
    0
    That is scary that they would be dishonest! Is this a private school? Privacte schools are not bound by state mandates, only public schools.

    NASN surveyed affiliates in 48 states (excluding Hawaii and North Dakota) and determined that the following states have mandated school nursing services. This survey was done in 2001.

    ALABAMA
    ARKANSAS
    CONNECTICUT
    DELAWARE
    LOUISIANA
    MASSACHUSETTS
    MINNESOTA
    NEVADA
    NEW JERSEY
    PENNSYLVANIA
    RHODE ISLAND
    TENNESSEE
    VERMONT
    WEST VIRGINIA






    Quote from KristinWW
    Thanks for the info, but I had to make an immediate decision for my son's sake and decided to pull him out. How did I discover the teachers were covering? Once my son was hurt in school I received a call from a young kid who said he worked "in the clinic". I then called the school's front office and asked to speak to the regular nurse. I was told she was no longer with the school and that I would be transferred to the "clinic coordinator" and gave me his name. I specifically asked if he was a nurse, to which the school administrator replied, "of course".

    The following week another incident occurred where my son was injured in school, and no one contacted me from the school. On pick-up, I said to two teachers separately if they contacted the nurse (and I used the old nurse's name) during the day to see the injury. They both said, "of course, we always do."

    I began to investigate on my own and that's when I discovered that the school was losing large amounts of students and was in fear of closing. I also contacted the FL Dept of Health, the FL Board of Nursing, and the FL Board of Education. All three were very helpful and gave me answers to every question.

    It's a scary concept that FL does not require school nurses. Do you know which other states do not? Is the list long? Does PA?
  9. Visit  Nur_1996 profile page
    1
    Quote from KristinWW
    Thanks for the info, but I had to make an immediate decision for my son's sake and decided to pull him out. How did I discover the teachers were covering? Once my son was hurt in school I received a call from a young kid who said he worked "in the clinic". I then called the school's front office and asked to speak to the regular nurse. I was told she was no longer with the school and that I would be transferred to the "clinic coordinator" and gave me his name. I specifically asked if he was a nurse, to which the school administrator replied, "of course".

    The following week another incident occurred where my son was injured in school, and no one contacted me from the school. On pick-up, I said to two teachers separately if they contacted the nurse (and I used the old nurse's name) during the day to see the injury. They both said, "of course, we always do."

    I began to investigate on my own and that's when I discovered that the school was losing large amounts of students and was in fear of closing. I also contacted the FL Dept of Health, the FL Board of Nursing, and the FL Board of Education. All three were very helpful and gave me answers to every question.

    It's a scary concept that FL does not require school nurses. Do you know which other states do not? Is the list long? Does PA?
    I feel bad that your school has lied to you and that the school district you live in feels that having a nurse at school is not important. I currently am a school nurse in SW FL, I am a LPN with a lot of peds/picu and camp nursing experience, I also hold a PALS (pediatric advanced life support) cert. I needed to tell you that, because I may not have a BSN like the national school nursing org. recommends, but I do have a very good knowledge of peds and assesment skills to do my job. EVERY CHILD DESERVES A SCHOOL NURSE!! We are lucky in out district to have school nurses we have full times nurses at our schools with special needs students, full time nurse at the high schools and our elementry and middle schools we are shared between a few schools. I currently have 3 elementry schools which I am equally divided between during the school year, my schools are about 2 miles apart, making it very easy for one school to call me to assess any need, if I'm need scheduled at their school that day. Our school nursing program is ran by the local hospital, not the school district so we have very strict guildlines and policies and procedures that we work by, We have a great boss that is only a phone call away. Ideally if funds permitted, I would like to see a full time nurse in all of the schools, we need to let the school districts know that this is a prority for our childrens saftey. When I am not in one of my schools the"clinic aid" see the children, they do a good job, but as stated before, more children are sent home and sometimes sent back to class sick because many times my clinic aids are pulled to classroom or lunch duties instead of staying in the clinic, then the school office people see the kids, (not good) I am proud to be a school nurse, my pay is a lot less then hospital bedside nursing , but the hours are much better! We need to get more awareness to the public that there are not nurses in many schools, and this needs to change.
    HangInThere likes this.


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