Anonymous asked in Pregnancy & ParentingParenting · 1 decade ago

Where are the school nurses?

When I was in school, if you got a bad cut or a headache, or something equally small, you went to see the school nurse who cleaned and bandaged you up. She also gave you spare plasters incase yours got loose. They could give you painkiller if you were old enough or just keep you quiet for half an hour if you weren't. You stayed in school.

These days, my child gets sent home with a bad cut, so she goes to the nurse in the surgery and gets the treatment she should have got at school. It just means she's missing a day of school for a cut.

It also means my car is on the road when it shouldn't need to be. Cut down on your carbon emissions? Then why make us collect the kid, take it to the doctors, for something that could be dealt with by a school nurse?


The surgery nurse doesn't give you any spare plasters, and when you go to buy them, they cost nearly a fiver.

13 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    Most primary and combined schools can't afford the insurance to enable them to take any medical responsibility because of the blame and sue culture we now live in.

  • 1 decade ago

    First of all, there is usually only one or two actual nurses per school district. Schools cannot afford to pay a nurse's salary. Most of the people in the schools have some basic First Aid training, but they are not licensed professionals.

    The reason they are sent home is because there are state regulations on what an unlicensed caregiver can do, as opposed to a licensed RN.

    Unlicensed personnel pretty much can give a tylenol (if the parent signs a release), put on a band-aid, or an ice pack. If there is even a hint that it could be something more severe, the unlicensed personnel is not qualified to assess and treat.

    So, parents must be called and the child is sent home.

    ETA: I'm speaking as a nurse from the US. Regulations in the UK or other countries could be different.

    ETA2: Purple, nurses in the UK can dispense the morning after pill?! Don't you need a perscription for that?

    Source(s): RN
  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    That's an odd situation. At my daughters school they have a school nurse which deals with minor cuts and bruises and if my daughter had a fall, tumble etc then they give me a note once she has left for the day letting me know how it happened what happened and what remedy they gave, however, all schools now have limited means as to what kind of remedy they can give to a child. Some of them are reasonable but some are stupid like teachers aren't allowed to touch pupils heads to look for headlice, or apply sun tan lotion etc.

    I must admit, the school nursing system is ridiculous but unfortunately us ever suffering parents just have to live with it

  • 1 decade ago

    I don't know about where you live, but here budget cuts have caused school nurses to become a relic of the past. We always had a school nurse assess any complaints before our mother would be called to come and retrieve us from school, preventing anyone from faking a fever or getting out of class for something stupid or non-existent. As it is, my kids now call home themselves, sometimes don't even have to go to the school office, and I've had to go get them for headaches, nausea, tiredness (can you believe that one?), and so on, because no one is policing their complaints. My daughter's middle school "shared" one school nurse with several other schools, so she was rarely there. What good do they actually do at that point, if they're rarely even in the school?

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  • 1 decade ago

    My husband is a teacher and he hates this as well. The *ONLY* treatment that anyone in the school is allowed to give a child is cotton wool and water! No plasters on cuts in case the child reacts to the adhesive or the plastic the plaster is made from, etc, etc. It is absolutely absurd.

    But, do you want to know what's even more absurd? The school employs two nurses!

  • Annie
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    In the states, very few schools have full time nurses anymore for one simple reason...cost. A full time nurse would earn roughly the same salary as a teacher. When push comes to shove, most school systems (understandably) would like to keep the teachers they have rather than have to cut one to pay for the nurse. Addtitionally, the rise in law suits has made it increasingly risky to have a student treated by a schoolnurse, even for the most basic of cuts.

  • 1 decade ago

    They have 10 primary schools and 1-2 comprehensives to cover per nurse. They have sex clinics, immunisation programmes, 'growing and puberty' lessons and weight and growth monitoring to do. They have child proteciton meetings and public and parenting education classes to run. They have to organise, carry out and evaluate local and national information, data and ensure each child gets the help that they need. They are at risk of being sued for carrying out the roles that they are employed for (angry parents/sex advice etc.) They have to train others how to look after any child who fits, needs an epipen or who is diabetic etc. Conflict resolution, anti bullying, any goverment initiative...This is not a complete list.

    They get paid pro rata (24 hours is considered fulltime), without payment for school holiday and with little opportunity for promotion or wage increases. They get snubbed in the teachers lounge and ignored by the PCTs. Ironically, we are often better qualified than some teachers... Most of the school nurses were highly qualified professional earning about £8-10,000 per year.

    The children are usually lovely and very grateful and in desparate need. We do it for that reason. And then we are taken advantage of...

    We are allowed to give out condoms and the morning after pill...but not plasters!

    If you send your child to a private school, they will get the cosy traditional school nurse you and I remember. If they were more valued, maybe there would be one in each school, really getting to know the children.

    I hope this helps explain the problem.

    Source(s): Old job. Mum. Fully qualified nurse and fully qualified teacher. Written quickly in rage...not at the fact that you are right and there is nothing we can both do to help the situation.
  • 1 decade ago

    And don't forget there is always that parent who would sue the school for taking matters into their own hands if they felt the cut was bad enough for stitches.

    It is a no win situation for the school or the parent inconvenienced to take her child to the doctor. And complaining about them not giving you a back up band aid, come on now.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I remember school nurses too. Our local middle schools and high schools still have them full time because they are bigger schools. They are there for a very limited number of hours in the elementary schools. It's all about budget cuts. There is a lot more money spent on teaching. For example, we have resource room now for kids who need more one on one attention with reading and math. The classroom size is limited to about 30 kids. I remember classrooms with over 40 kids.

  • 1 decade ago

    that's completly ridiculous

    At my school if you say anything hurts you get tylenol or some kind of pain killer. If you get a small cut they run it under water until the bleeding stops, if you get a bigger cut you get a plaster

    the only time we had a student sent to the hopital was when a girl accidentaly stabbed herself right in the center of her palm with an exacto knife and needed stitches

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