House Concurrent Resolution No. 25





            WHEREAS, the practice of school nursing began in the United States in 1902, when the initial role of the school nurse was to reduce absenteeism by intervening with students and families regarding health care needs related to communicable diseases; and


            WHEREAS, today, professional school nursing is a specialized practice that advances the well-being, academic success, and lifelong achievement of students. To that end, school nurses facilitate positive student responses to normal development, 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, and self-advocacy, and learning; and


            WHEREAS, seven roles have been identified by the National Association of School Nurses:


            (1) Providing health care to students and staff;

            (2) Providing leadership for the provision of health services;

            (3) Providing screening and referral for health care;

            (4) Promoting a healthy school environment;

            (5) Promoting health;

            (6) Serving in a leadership role for health policies and programs;

            (7) Serving as a liaison between school personnel, family, community, and health care providers; and


            WHEREAS, under optimal conditions, all public schools should have a school nurse on staff; and


            WHEREAS, today, school nurses are facing increased pressures from every direction. Overwhelming amounts of paperwork, strict administrative policies, diminishing school budgets, and serious concerns regarding legal liabilities leave an insufficient amount of time and resources to provide students with the quality of care they deserve; and


            WHEREAS, as schools grapple with mandates from the federal government to vaccinate students, many districts have few or no nurses to prevent or respond to outbreaks, leaving students more vulnerable to viruses that spread easily in classrooms and take a heavier toll on children and young adults; and


            WHEREAS, a 2008 survey by the National Association of School Nurses found that only 45% of public schools have their own full-time nurse, another 30% have a part-time nurse, and 25% don't have any nurses at all; and


            WHEREAS, given the vital role of our professional school nurses, school districts should recognize the dedication and contributions made by professionals:


            NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the members of the House of Representatives of the Ninety-sixth General Assembly, Second Regular Session, the Senate concurring therein, hereby recognize the important health and educational services that professional school nurses provide and strongly urge every school district in this state to recognize the dedication of professional school nurses and the valuable role they play in Missouri schools; and


            BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Chief Clerk of the Missouri House of Representatives be instructed to prepare a properly inscribed copy of this resolution for each school district in Missouri.