The PA Catholic Conference has been working for years to make sure that school districts in Pennsylvania provide nursing services for non-public school students. That includes Catholic schools, of course. We’ve been getting resistance along the way, even though the state requires that such nursing services be provided. School districts many times say it’s an issue of funding.
Well now we have a chance to get nurses for all of our schools with the federal government picking up the tab. And here’s where you can help….
Please contact your state Senator to ask them to sign on as a cosponsor to Sen. Andy Dinniman’s proposed bill that calls for a nurse to be put in every nonpublic school this year. Such a move would have no fiscal impact on districts, because the bill calls for CARES Act funding to pay for the nursing services.
Here’s some of Sen. Dinniman’s sponsorship memo…
“The pandemic and the question of providing safe and healthy school environments for those in school is dependent on the presence of a Certified School Nurse (CSN). Pennsylvania law provides the services of a school nurse in public, religious and private schools. However, the current ratio of 1 nurse:1500 students simply does not provide the level of nursing services needed during the current COVID crisis. Many public and non-public school buildings are without nursing services in the building on a daily basis.
The Pennsylvania Department of Health, in its August 15th COVID “School Health Resources for School Nurses” makes clear the importance of the school nurse in the reopening of schools on an in-person or hybrid basis. In order to allow our schools to open and preserve the health of students, teachers and staff, this bill calls for $38 million in COVID funds to be used to pay for nurses in every building with over 100 students, public or non-public, through the 2020-2021 school year.”