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Notes from the news, Feb. 4

By the Notebook on Feb 4, 2013 09:35 AM

Arlene Ackerman: loved, vilified, remembered Daily News

See also: Former Philly schools chief clashed with officials. AP

An old-school educator who wouldn't play the game they wanted her to. Daily News

There's no turning back with school closings. Inquirer

Moving schools to District headquarters could be part of plan. CBS Philly

Don't use students as a bargaining chip. Patriot-News

District looks to universities to provide nursing services to schools. CBS Philly

The inconvenient truth of education ‘reform’ Answer Sheet/Washington Post

Has high-stakes testing reached a tipping point? Smart Blog

News summary from Keystone State Education Coalition


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Notes from the news

Please email davidl@thenotebook.org if we missed anything today or if you have any suggestions of publications, email lists, or other places for us to check for news.

 
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Comments (6)

Submitted by Eileen Duffey (not verified) on February 4, 2013 8:54 pm
District Looks to Universities to Provide Nursing Services to Schools Please read this article. The searing comments that follow by parents, teachers, and certified school nurses lay bare Dr. Hite's not-so-hidden agenda: A public relations smoke and mirrors pseudo-proposal to care for the school children of Philadelphia without investing a dime to restore a safe student to nurse ratio. The reality is that stewardship of the health of Philadelphia children in schools is a complicated balancing act best provided by properly trained and certified professional nurses. Nurse, student, and family relationships matter. The quailty of nurse services improves dramatically when the nurse to student ratio is 1:750 as recommended by the National Association of School Nurses. Dr. Hite has said, "We want to get out of the health business in our schools". Separating the health from the child is not an option.
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on February 5, 2013 1:29 am
Thank you for this alert, Eileen. As a parent, if I receive a call from the school nurse, I would like him/her to know enough about my child to do more than tell me to pick him/her up. This is especially true for medically frail students. Hite did the same thing in Maryland - cut nurses and librarians. We already have far too few librarians and nurses. I assume Hite will also find ways to cut more teachers. It will be the charter model of not requiring certification and have "temp" workers to teach particular classes.
Submitted by Peg D (not verified) on February 5, 2013 5:39 am
..."Boston Consulting Group purports to streamline nursing services under a shared-service organization that “would manage both contracts of specialists and allocation across schools.” Such a structure typically removes employees from site-specific posts and deploys them according to the needs of “consumers,” in this case students." I would like to know exactly who they think will be determining the needs of these "consumers" Occupational Therapists and Physical Therapists who work with students in schools already depend on the Certified School Nurses to coordinate their services to students. The School District Physician who provides physical examinations for students needing OT/PT services also depends on the Certified School Nurse to obtain parental permission and to obtain pertinent medical information from the students' physicians. The Department of Health in Philadelphia counts on the Certified School Nurses to report cases of communicable diseases including meningitis and chicken pox to name a few. Certified School Nurses routinely communicate with students’ primary care providers to coordinate care, including medication administration, immunization compliance and state mandated physical examinations. Schools depend on the Certified School Nurse to detect Child Abuse and report it to the Department of Human Services. Schools are provided secretaries at a ratio of 1 to every 600 students. Secretaries are not supposed to be acting as nurses; it is part of the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the School District and the PFT. There is at least one Counselor assigned to each school, no matter how few students are enrolled, again this is part of the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the School District and the PFT. The students of this city would be much better served if the Certified School Nurses were assigned at ratios more in line with Secretaries and Counselors.
Submitted by Concerned Nurse (not verified) on February 5, 2013 10:53 am
What are putting university students in school going to help? School nursing is a very specialized service that nurses must have their BSN and continuing Graduate certification. Most have their Graduate degree. We must be educated in all pediatric diseases and problems, including mental health issue and educational issues. How are nursing students going to help? the past 2 years, Temple students came out to weigh and measure everyone. Yes it helped a little, but I still had to input all of the information and they could not even if they wanted to, help with an Asthmatic child or a Diabetic Child, or even a child with behavioral issues. They could not perform first aid or pretty much anything. So we have an extra body in the schools giving the appearance of having coverage, but without qualifications to give appropriate care. How does this make anything better? It is just a smoke screen. It does not address the real issue at all. We used to have a nurse in almost every school until our ranks were decimated leaving our children at risk. What is it going to take for those higher up to realize qualified appropriate nursing is not an option? Why would the state have a law that school nurses have to have Graduate school certification if it weren't necessary? Does a child need to be seriously injured or endangered or die for them to open their eyes to the dangers that are now present in the schools that do not have a full time nurse? You may not have gone to the school nurse very often when you were in school, maybe just for screening, but she was always there for those "just in cases" and for the children that did need to see a nurse on a daily basis. Our school nurses, save our kids!
Submitted by Concerned Nurse (not verified) on February 5, 2013 10:13 am
What are putting university students in school going to help? School nursing is a very specialized service that nurses must have their BSN and continuing Graduate certification. Most have their Graduate degree. We must be educated in all pediatric diseases and problems, including mental health issue and educational issues. How are nursing students going to help? the past 2 years, Temple students came out to weigh and measure everyone. Yes it helped a little, but I still had to input all of the information and they could not even if they wanted to, help with an Asthmatic child or a Diabetic Child, or even a child with behavioral issues. They could not perform first aid or pretty much anything. So we have an extra body in the schools giving the appearance of having coverage, but without qualifications to give appropriate care. How does this make anything better? It is just a smoke screen. It does not address the real issue at all. We used to have a nurse in almost every school until our ranks were decimated leaving our children at risk. What is it going to take for those higher up to realize qualified appropriate nursing is not an option? Why would the state have a law that school nurses have to have Graduate school certification if it weren't necessary? Does a child need to be seriously injured or endangered or die for them to open their eyes to the dangers that are now present in the schools that do not have a full time nurse? You may not have gone to the school nurse very often when you were in school, maybe just for screening, but she was always there for those "just in cases" and for the children that did need to see a nurse on a daily basis. Our school nurses, save our kids!
Submitted by Pam (not verified) on February 5, 2013 1:33 pm
After reading the article on partnering with local universities for additional school nurse coverage- I am absolutely stunned that the School District of Philadelphia would even consider this partnership as a solution to the Certified School Nurse shortage that was created by the layoffs. If it was simply a matter of "dental" exams and BMI measurements then all would be solved. However, that is not really the issue facing the students, staff and families that attend schools without nurses on a daily basis. I have 1200 students at my school. I take care of students that have very complex medical problems needing treatments, assessments and medication on a daily basis. Schools may not be in the health 'business" as Dr. Hite pointed out- but how do you separate the students medical issues from their educational issues? A child must be healthy and safe before education can even begin. Isn't that a basic tenant of education, that we educate the "whole" child. I am sorry, try as they might, the ugly truth of the matter is that the only issue is financial not the needs of the students. Children are not getting the care and attention on a daily basis that is necessary if there is not a Certified School Nurse. I know that you do not need to be a School Nurse to realize that sending a University Student to do the job of a professional with years of experience is a ridiculous assumption. I sure would not want the safety of my child to depend on these students, and as far a a dental exam and BMI- thanks I'll take my child to his dentist.

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