Recognizing school nurses

School nursing has become a specialized practice focused on supporting students’ well-being and academic success.

Submitted by Pat Endsley

School nurses across Maine will spend the coming week trying to spread the word about the multi-faceted role they play in the educational setting.

They kicked off National Nurses Week on May 5 with a Blaine House reception hosted by First Lady Ann LePage.

On May 11, school nurses will celebrate National School Nurse Day, a recognition established in 1972 to promote greater understanding of all that being a school nurse entails.

Today, school nursing is recognized as a specialized practice that advances the well-being, academic success, and life-long achievement of students.  To this end, more than 60,000 school nurses across the country and more than 400 in Maine promote health and safety; intervene with actual and potential health problems; provide case management services; and actively collaborate with others to build student and family capacity for adaptation, self management, self advocacy, and learning.

At their May 5 tea, Maine school nurses recognized Sharon Foster, the school nurse in Guilford-based School Administrative District 4 and current Maine School Nurse of the Year. Speakers included Maine Association of School Nurses president Brenda White and Maine Department of Education school nurse consultant Nancy Dube.

Pat Endsley, R.N., is the school nurse at Wells High School and the Maine director of the National Association of School Nurses.

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