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Retired Member Appointed to the Journal of School Nursing Editorial Board

Ann Nichols, North Carolina State School Health Nurse Consultant, Retired, was appointed in November 2021 to the Journal of School Nursing Editorial Panel for a two-year term. The Editorial Panel supports the journal publication process through contribution to policy and process, and review for publishing recommendations of writer submissions. Ann hopes to have influence on perspectives that will facilitate understanding of the relevance of the published literature for application by the practicing school nurse. 


Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action Better Schools, Better Communities for a Healthier America

New Orleans, Oct. 2-3, 2019

  • The Public Policy Institute, Center to Champion Nursing in America has been in the works since 2010 as a result of the 2010 IOM report on the Future of Nursing. Several states created active and involved teams. Dr. Susan Hassmiller is the director of this project, Better Schools, Better Communities for a Healthier America in New Orleans.
  • A variety of non-nurse partners spoke to the crucial role of school nurses in addressing upstream solutions to chronic health condition management. The focus was on health equity, other social determinants of health, mental health, and substance abuse prevention.
  • Use your voice: bring a chair to the table if there isn't one.
  • All shared and committed to at least one of their action items.
  • Use data and stories; work together, remember other partners.
  • Work towards a national platform integrating Title V, Surgeon General recommendations, EPSDT, USPTF screening recommendations, and others, that puts children’s health first and includes a revised funding stream, national standards for school health across the nation, and accountability for student health outcomes.
  • NASSNC’s Membership Committee works with each state to advocate for a SSNC where vacant.  We request input on the value & role of a SSNC to support improved health access for all students. Having a school nurse every day, all day improves health AND educational outcomes.

Retired Member and Former NASSNC President Publishes a Resource Manual


Jessica Gerdes, Illinois State School Nurse Consultant, Retired, collaborated with a colleague on a book on the role of the school nurse in the special education process. Special Education and School Nurses was published July 2019.  This book can serve as a refresher/resource for the experienced school nurse and as a manual for the new school nurse, or a school nurse newly assigned to special education evaluation duties.  It can be used by the SSNC as an accompanying text to a school nurse certification or training program. Special Education and School Nurses: From Assessments to IEPs, by Frances Belmonte-Mann, MA RN & Jessica H. Gerdes, MS RN (July 2019).  Available by purchase from the publishing website,, or other booksellers.  (e-book or soft cover) 

Diabetes Competency Framework for the School Personnel

Kathleen Patrick, Colorada State School Nurse Consultant , Retired, collaborated with expert diabetes nurses on a framework outlining the knowledge and skills needed to care for students with diabetes by various individuals in the school setting. Competency skills were determined for the Health Aide, School Nurse and Diabetes Resource Nurse using the Dephi Method which is a consensus building technique. The results were published in the Journal of School Health in June 2019. The title of the article is "Equipping School Health Personnel for Diabetes Care with a Competency Framework and Pilot Education Program."

Berget Cari, Nii Pamela, Wyckoff Leah, Patrick Kathleen, Brooks-Russell Ashley, Messer Laurel. (2019). Equipping School Health Personnel for Diabetes Care with a Competency Framework and Pilot Education Program. Journal of School Health. 89. 10.1111/josh.12806.



2018 Iowa Public Health Association Lillian Wald Award

On April 10, 2018 Melissa Walker was nominated and will be receiving the 2018 Iowa Public Health Association Lillian Wald Award. 
Melissa Walker has been the Iowa Department of Education School Nurse Consultant since 2013. Melissa advocates, educates, and articlulates the importance of school health services and the role of school nurses to all. Melissa has the ability to address questions and concerns regarding individual students and also able to extrapolate her response to the larger population of students or a community. Melissa influences the health of individuals and larger populations by serving as a liaison between Iowa Department of Education, Iowa Department of Public Health, and Iowa School Nurse Organization for a variety of school health education efforts and public policy issues such as epi-pen legislation. Ultimately, Melissa’s past, ongoing, and current efforts impact the daily practice of Iowa school nurses and more importantly influence the overall health of Iowa. In recognition of Lillian Wald, founder of public health nursing, who sent Lina Rogers, the first school nurse sent into schools to improve health, I do not know of anyone more deserving of the Lillian Wald Award other than Melissa Walker.



Johnson Johnson School Health Leadership Program

November 2016

Renae Sisk, State School Nurse Consultant from North Dakota, was part of the first ever North Dakota team to participate in the Johnson and Johnson School Health Leadership Program.  The Johnson & Johnson School Health Leadership Program is a fellowship program designed by Rutgers, Center of Alcohol Studies in collaboration with Johnson & Johnson. "This nationally recognized fellowship program includes curriculum and opportunities designed to empower school nurses and their community/administrative partners to become leaders within their community’s educational and health services teams to improve student health practices. All education offered through the program is in partnership with the National Association for School Nurses (NASN).  Team North Dakota conducted a needs assessment in their community prior to attending the program.  Based on this needs assessment, the team was able to develop and implement an enduring change plan.  Each team who attended had unique needs in their community; therefore, each enduring change plan was different.  Renae stated, “it was a once in a lifetime opportunity to be able to attend this prestigious program.  The leadership skills that we learned from the curriculum and staff were excellent.  This program not only helped us pin point what our community needs truly were, but it also helped us build partnerships and collaborate with various people and entities.  I am so thankful we were accepted and able to participate in this great program” (Sisk, 2016).

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