How to Become a School Nurse 

School Nurse

Perhaps you are an aspiring nurse who is currently going through intensive training or about to qualify, or else you are already a practicing medical professional who is looking for a change of pace.

Regardless of your reasons for wanting to know more about a career as a school nurse, you have most definitely clicked on the right article! Here is everything you need to know about how to become a school nurse. 

Why School Nurses Are Vital

A high school or elementary school with a strong and successful nursing program is not only a school that helps to ensure both the physical and the emotional health of its student population but also one that makes a valuable contribution to the health of the community as a whole. 

Some children do not have adequate health insurance, which results in their school nurse being their only point of contact with a healthcare professional, and this provision of care and access to treatment options makes a huge difference in their lives.

School nursing is an entirely different specialism of nursing and, as you would expect, comes with its own challenges and rewards in equal measure. 

Roles & Responsibilities of a School Nurse

Every working day as a school nurse is entirely different, although, as you would expect, there are some typical roles, duties, and responsibilities that all school nurses are tasked with, including:

  • Educating students about preventative care, healthy lifestyles, mental health, and sexual health
  • Taking care of in-school hours treatment for conditions such as diabetes
  • The provision of additional educational tools for students with ADHD or autism 
  • Coordinating care with teachers and parents 
  • Administering the chickenpox vaccine and other inoculations  
  • The routine performance of screenings, assessments and referrals 

Earn Your Nursing Degree & License 

As with any other nursing specialism, if you are serious about and dedicated to becoming a school nurse, it is first necessary to successfully acquire a bachelor’s degree in nursing from a reputable and established university. 

As an alternative to a bachelor’s degree, you could look into graduating from an accredited specialized nursing program, and if you are leaning towards the latter, contact the National Association of School Nurses for all the information you need. 

After you have completed your degree program, it is then time to apply for your nursing license, which essentially means that you will then become a registered nurse. The license will be taken in the form of an examination which will be graded by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. 

Discover Your Specific State Requirements

Finally, once you have successfully acquired your bachelor’s degree in nursing and have passed your accredited license program, the final step is to find out the specific state requirements for school nurses.

Remember that school nurses can work in a wide variety of different settings, from charter, private, middle, high, pre-school, and alternative schools, to universities, vocational schools and hospitals. There may well be separate requirements depending on your desired location.