What do you wear to work as a school nurse?

Updated:   Published

I looked through the last 10 pages of posts and key word searched the forum but did not see much on the subject of what most school nurses wear. Do you wear scrubs, lab coat, business casual, or something else? I was just hired into a middle/high school position and they said I could wear scrubs, but didn't give much direction. What do you find is most appropriate?

RatherBHiking, BSN, RN

1 Article; 575 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg, Oncology, OB, School Nurse. Has 31 years experience.

I wear scrubs. I began school nursing before scrubs were a thing other than the OR and OB. I was told we didn't have to wear our white nurse's uniforms in school as it scared the kids. Fast forward many years, I now wear scrubs and have for the past 6 yrs or so. I got sick of hearing "Are you the nurse?". Now I'm easily recognizable. I can wear tennis shoes every day. I don't ruin dress clothes and I have lots of pockets. It's so easy to get ready in the morning. However some choose a lab coat with casual dress and that looks nice too. I just get too hot with an extra layer and can't move around as well with dress clothes. I'm at an Elementary School and am sometimes on the floor or cleaning up something nasty and my scrubs wash well. I'd say choose what you're most comfortable with!

MrNurse(x2), ADN

1 Article; 2,558 Posts

Specializes in IMC, school nursing. Has 28 years experience.

Scrub cargo pants with polo shirt, same as what I wear at the hospital. Cue... Old Dude!


46 Posts

Specializes in school nursing. Has 3 years experience.

When I was subbing in another district it was business casual. Where I am now, it's scrubs. The philosophy behind the scrubs is that it makes us easily identifiable in crowds (outside for fire drill/emergency, in the gymnasium/auditorium, etc). Not only for students and regular staff but for substitutes as well.

But it brings up the question, do we WANT to be easily identified!!! "Oh your toe has been hurting for 3 days now? Hmmmmmm. Oh look, I see the nurse!"


887 Posts

Specializes in ED, School Nurse.

I wear scurbs most days, sometimes jeans with a dressy top and boots or Danskos. Our school has a pretty casual dress code for teachers so I mimic what they wear when I don't wear scrubs.

School nurses ALWAYS wear pink on Wednesdays here at AN.


12,646 Posts

Has 25 years experience.

I'm a nurse, so I wear scrubs.

And yes, PINK scrubs on Wednesdays.

Business casual here. I do many other things than being the Nurse so it just makes sense for me.


1,263 Posts

When I started, they said I had to wear business casual, but I found getting blood and other icky stuff out of dress pants to be an issue. Now I wear scrubs most of the time.


454 Posts

Scrubs. Lots of pockets, super comfy, easy to get ready in the morning, no brainer to me! :)


701 Posts

Specializes in Pediatrics, Community Health, School Health. Has 27 years experience.

It depends on my mood. Our school is business casual M-W, then Th/Fr all staff wear jeans and a school t-shirt. Sometimes I wear scrubs if I don't feel like planning an outfit, other days I wear something a little dressier.

allnurses Guide


1 Article; 4,787 Posts

Specializes in Pediatrics Retired.
MrNurse(x2) said:
Scrub cargo pants with polo shirt, same as what I wear at the hospital. Cue... Old Dude!

Cargo Pants...I wear a 100% cotton long sleeve T-shirt with my name and "RN" embroidered over the left pect every day. I wore red with my name in blue lettering the last two years but this year my wife switched me to blue with red lettering. Our school colors are red and blue. Since I'm such a sensitive individual and completely comfortable with my feminine side I am allowed in the room on Pink Wednesdays but I sit at a different table near the back of the room...where I am joined by others who forget to wear pink on that day.


1,241 Posts

Specializes in Home Health,Dialysis, MDS, School Nurse. Has 20+ years experience.

It was my choice, so I wear scrubs. As the others said, it makes me visible as the nurse, especially to the little ones, and since I already had a full wardrobe of them - why not! Also much more comfortable and easy to move in than dress clothes. Staff wear jeans on fridays for $1 to charity, so I usually wear jeans and a school spirit shirt.