Guidance for Teachers (traffic control)


For some reason my clinic traffic is out of control this year. I'm wondering what specific guidance you use for teachers regarding when they should send students vs what & how to manage things in class?


Specializes in Pediatrics Retired. 1 Article; 4,787 Posts

One thing that I'm trying this year, with admin approval, is to instruct the teachers to NOT send students to the clinic during "prime time" - that's the first hour of the school day when instruction is being given and the day being planned out. The exception is if there is some outward sign of illness. This keeps the morning rush of kids that don't want to be at school at bay for at least an hour; some of them forget about being sick and some don't. Regardless, it also gives the teachers an opportunity to realize kids don't need to be seen immediately in the clinic just because they say they have a stomach, etc. It's too soon to see how it's gonna pan out but I do enjoy that brief moment when I can collect my thoughts for the day. I still see kids during prime time because teachers are different in what they perceive as a sign of illness...but it's better than previous years.

SnowyJ, RN

Has 28 years experience. 1 Article; 844 Posts

I like the "prime time" idea. I may have to try that.

Though many students come to me right off the bus. They know if they chance getting to class, the teacher might encourage them to stay.

I check them quickly and down the hall they go.

Glad the first week is over. So many tears and much drama. The kids had some issues with it too. :cheeky:

lifelearningrn, BSN, RN

Specializes in School Nursing. Has 8 years experience. 2,517 Posts

I have two or three teachers that will send the kids for anything and everything. One student has been in my office almost daily. One day it's general "I don't feel good", next it's headache, next it's stomachache, one day it was tears and "I miss my mom".. I'm about to have a one on one with that teacher... it's ridiculous, this kid is in 3rd grade!

mc3, ASN, RN

Has 12 years experience. 931 Posts

For some reason my clinic traffic is out of control this year. I'm wondering what specific guidance you use for teachers regarding when they should send students vs what & how to manage things in class?

Mine too. It's been just awful!!



Specializes in School Nursing, Hospice,Med-Surg. Has 18 years experience. 762 Posts

I have a certain grade of teachers that sends students "en masse." Particularly after recess. I honestly believe they end recess and say, "raise your hand if you need to see the nurse!"

Hands raise, then those students are sent together to me. I could have a student vomiting, or a student having a seizure, or both, then a big pile of 10 kids shows up together shouting their symptoms. It's absurd. This is the one issue I really have to address and fix this school year. This is year 2 of it happening (I thought it was the group of students that was in that class last year but it turns out it's a teacher habit in that grade...)

Wave Watcher

Specializes in Community Health/School Nursing. Has 7 years experience. 751 Posts

I send out a quick reminder to my staff at least 2x a year. Once in the beginning and once typically after January because they start to get back into old/bad habits sending kids down. Trust me, I still have students all day long that fit into the DO NOT send to nurse category. But I think it does help the teachers to kind of check/balance if/when they should send a student. *This list was made by my old supervisor.

This is what it says:



Serious fall/head injury

Open wounds that may require stitches

Wounds that do not stop bleeding after adequate first aid

Suspicious rash that appear to be contagious

Severe nosebleeds that will not stop after 5 minutes (continuing to saturate Kleenex and large amount of blood)

Lice/nit confirmation

Bee or wasp stings

Medication administration. Student must have their own supply in the clinic. **District nurses DO NOT give ANY medication including over the counter medication unless the parent has provided an individual supply and completed necessary paper work.


DO NOT SEND STUDENTS TO THE HEALTH CLINIC DURING THE ANNOUNCED LUNCH TIME FOR YOUR NURSE! In the event of an emergency notify front office and they will call/walkie/page nurse.

Scrapes/cuts - Please keep band aids in your classroom for scrapes or cuts. Instruct students to wash with soap and water and then to use a Band-Aid.

Old injuries/wounds - Ice is NOT indicated for injury more than 24 hours old. Sprains, strains, bumps, bruises need to be addressed by the student's parent unless there are direct inability to function in the classroom.

Loose teeth (give baggies to put lost tooth in to take home)

Bug bites, itchy skin, dry skin, chapped lips, blisters or splinters

Soiled clothes: Call parents from office

Minor injuries: if there is no obvious sign of trauma: (redness, knot forming, bruising) there is NO need for ice pack

Minor nose bleeds caused by dry sinuses, picking scabs, etc.