101 Careers in Nursing

By Jeanne M. Novotny; Doris T. Lippman et al. | Go to book overview
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School Nurse
1. Basic description—The school nurse practices professional nursing within an educational setting with the goal of assisting students to develop to their greatest physical, emotional, and intellectual ability. School nurses promote health and safety practices and provide interventions to actual and potential health problems. These nurses respond to acute injuries within the school population, as well as assist students to manage chronic conditions, such as food allergies, asthma, and other illnesses. Practice settings include school systems, state health departments, and county health departments.
2. Educational requirements—RN preparation. Some school systems and/or health departments are requiring that school nurses have baccalaureate or masters degrees in nursing. For example, the State of Massachusetts requires a minimum of 2 full years as a nurse in a child, community health, or other relevant clinical nursing setting.
3. Core competencies/skills needed:
General experience with children
Strong foundation in physical assessment and first aid and emergency care
A solid skill base and understanding of pediatric medicine
Knowledge of developmental stages is very important in order to provide age appropriate care
Strong communication and interpersonal skills to assess and determine the health care needs of the children and their families
Computer skills to chart and track students’ records and immunization status
Ability to relate to children and communicate patients and the school community
Ability to provide health education
Responsible for medication management of children while they are in school
Skills to participate as a member of a multidisciplinary education team and collaborate with other members of the educational environment
Ability to provide care for minor ailments such as a scraped knee as well as potentially serious conditions such as an allergic reaction or a major injury
Ensure the safety and well-being of all the children in the school
Ability to deal with issues such as school violence, suicide, and unwanted teen pregnancies
4. Compensation—Varies according to place of employment and geographic location
5. Employment outlook—Moderate
6. Related Web sites and professional organizations:
National Association of School Nurses (NASN): www.nasn.org
The Association of School Nurses of Connecticut: http://schoolnurse.vservers.com/
National Association of State School Nurse Consultants


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101 Careers in Nursing
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