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School nurses have always shouldered wide-ranging clinical and care coordination responsibilities, to which the pandemic added quarantine management, staff training in proper use of protective equipment, and contact tracing. As trusted figures in their communities, school nurses also are—or could be—valuable partners for state boards of education and other state stakeholders in forming guidance around safe school return.

During the pandemic, school nurses were sometimes, but not always, part of pandemic planning and crisis response teams and active partners in updating school health policies. Because of their ongoing role in coordinating with health departments and community health providers, they are well placed to lead during transitions back to school as well. …


Promoting School Nurses as Leaders in Reopening Schools



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