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Academic success is linked to student health

Oklahoman Published: June 30, 2014
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Regarding “School nurse reductions cause parents to worry” (McClatchy-Tribune, June 24): Academic success is strongly linked to student health. The typical student attending primary and secondary public schools in Oklahoma today brings a plethora of acute and chronic health conditions such as Type I diabetes, asthma, autism, ADHD, uncontrolled seizure disorders, food allergies, sickle cell anemia — to name only a few.

Many of these children require multiple daily assessments and medications. Serious emergencies such as respiratory/cardiac arrest, allergic reactions, broken limbs and concussions occur during the school day. The National Association of School Nurses recommends the ratio of one school nurse to 750 students in the general population and one school nurse to 225 students requiring daily intervention.

Full-time school nurses in every public school provide the professional care necessary for every student’s sense of safety and confidence in their individual ability to succeed. All students benefit, those requiring daily attention as well as those students with occasional needs.

A healthier public school student results in higher academic performance, increased high school graduation rates and college and job readiness.

Susan Boggs, R.N., Oklahoma City

Boggs is a certified school nurse and works as a circulating nurse for Putnam City Schools.