Do you remember going to the school nurse when you were growing up? Anytime you raised your hand in elementary school and told your teacher you did not feel well you were sent to the nurse. You sat on the little bed in their office, got your temperature taken, and you were either sent back to class or home, depending on what the nurse thought. In high school the nurse might be a little busier, as fights can occur, and so can sports injuries. Sadly, school nurses are becoming a thing of the past, they are turning into one of those tales like having to walk miles through the snow to get to school.
Why are school nurses becoming part of history? According to the Daily Nurse website, “a major consequence of the nationwide nurse shortage is a lack of school nurses. Less than half of the public schools around the country have full-time nurses, and it’s even worse in urban and underfunded schools, leaving one school nurse for every 4,000 students”. And according to the US News website, “school districts have steadily shed school nurse staff since the early 2000’s, as budgets tightened heading into the Great Recession”. Budgeting, and nurse shortages are the main reasons for the issues, and decline in an important role within the school system. Hopefully this will change, and school nurses won’t become completely obliterated.
Here are some facts coming from the nurses’ perspectives, I encourage you to read, as some of their points made me stop and think.