To Put This in Context:
Many U.S. schools lack full-time registered nurses to address modern health care threats. And since RNs have been shown to improve academic performance and create healthier environments, students without their care are at a serious disadvantage. Becoming a school nurse requires a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and years of experience, but it is a rewarding profession that can make a real difference in the lives of today’s youth. If you are a nursing student or college graduate who desires to serve in a greater way, read on to see if this is the career for you.
The problematic state of the school nurse profession.
Less than half of public schools in the United States employ a full-time nurse. Yet new health concerns have increased, which eclipse the capabilities of part-time nurses in American schools. Unfortunately, many U.S. schools — often in poor neighborhoods — lack the personnel who can identify health risks before they become real issues.
As a result, the career demand for registered nurses in schools has never been higher, with 2,800 positions expected to be open between 2014 and 2024. 
Did You Know?
Only 45% of public schools have a full-time nurse available, and another 30% of schools only have a part-time nurse. 
Broaden your nursing expertise. Create safer schools.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends a ratio of one nurse for every 750 students.  And for good reason: Germs spread rapidly in highly populated environments, making classrooms notorious breeding grounds for colds and flu-related illnesses.
Aspiring nurses can learn how to prevent these issues from impacting a school’s learning environment with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, the general requirement for certification as a school nurse.  These nurses are pivotal in our children’s physical and mental health. That’s why their education and skills must be as robust and diverse as the students with whom they interact.
Traditional and online BSNs can prepare you to:
- Administer vaccinations
- Schedule wellness exams to identify health risks
- Teach the school body proper hand-washing and personal hygiene techniques
- Identify the signs of illness and when to stay home from school
- Clean and disinfect commonly touched areas
- Devise action plans for potential outbreaks and quarantines
- Improve quality care in underserved communities
Did You Know?
According to the National Association of School Nurses, the work of full-time nurses makes a difference in the physical and emotional aspects of childhood development. 
You can provide quality care to highly stressed students.
The modern student is chronically stressed. Academic pressure and home conflicts have made many of today’s youth more vulnerable to injuries and emotional problems than their peers — all of which can negatively affect their academic future and adult life. 
A BSN can equip you with the communication skills to provide emotional support to students. And since nurses are not viewed as authority figures in the same way as principals or teachers, students may be more willing to share their problems with you.
The CDC has also reported that there is a correlation between students’ health and overall grades,  and the National Association of Elementary School Principals has linked these positive nurse interactions with healthy futures for students. 
Healthier students are better learners and have higher academic performance. #RNChat #HigherEd #Context
School nurses are health leaders. Become one.
The role of a 21st century school nurse offers a number of ways to make an impact on the overall health of today’s students, making it an attractive career path for compassionate individuals. The journey is not quick or easy — laws and requirements vary by state — but the rewards can be phenomenal:
- Gain financial security: Registered nurses command a median salary of $67,490 
- Become a community leader in health strategy
- Enjoy job security in a market that includes elementary schools, high schools, colleges, and universities
- Promote a culture of wellness that leaves a lasting impact
The best nurses thrive by applying advanced expertise to modern health care needs. A Bachelor or Master of Science in Nursing can help instill this skill. It can also position you to become a mentor who applies impactful care to the most vulnerable: our children.