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Introduction to School Nursing

The school nurse is a crucial member of the educational team who attends to the health and well-being of all students and is a liaison with the family and medical care sources.  

The National Association of School Nurses (NASN) Position Statement on the role of the 21st century school nurse says:

It is the position of NASN that school nurses play an essential role in keeping children healthy, safe, and ready to learn. The school nurse is a member of a unique discipline of professional nursing and is often the sole healthcare provider in an academic setting. Twenty‐first century school nursing practice is student‐centered, occurring within the context of the student's family and school community (NASN, 2016a). It is essential that all students have access to a full time school nurse all day, every day (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2016).

Foundational Resource Suggestions 

As of this writing there are a number of resources that are considered essential by many school nurses. Below are listed just a few of the many available to you.    


  • Manual School Nursing: A Comprehensive Text by Janice Selekman (Second Edition, 2012) – a must have. Will be your textbook, guide, etc. Third edition in process 2017 
  • Additional References to consider (by no means is this list all inclusive):  
    • Legal Issues in School Health Services: A Resource for School Administrators, School Attorneys, School Nurses by Nadine C. Schwab and Mary H.B. Gelfman (2005, Authors Choice Press)
    • School Health Policy and Practice (Seventh Edition, 2016) American Academy of Pediatrics
    • Managing Chronic Health Needs in Child Care and Schools (2009) American Academy of Pediatrics
    • Individualized Healthcare Plans for the School Nurse (Second Edition, 2017) Sunrise River Press

Apps / Online Resources

Professional Organizations

All school nurses are encouraged to belong to their professional organizations: The National Association of School Nurses (NASN) and the California School Nurses Organization (CSNO).  

Many School Nurses are also members of the American Nurses Association (ANA), the American Nurses Association California (ANA/C), and the American School Health Association.

These professional organizations offer a wealth of resources — continuing education, quality publications, advocacy, member discussion boards, and so much more. There are also a number of other specialty practice professional organizations.

Additional resources are suggested in the School Health Manual and on the School Nurse Resources page.