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HARRISBURG, PA (May 6, 2022) – Every day across Pennsylvania, nurses are making it possible for students with mental and physical health needs to succeed at school and for patients everywhere to get the care they need.
As National Nurses Week gets underway today, PSEA is joining communities across Pennsylvania to say thank you to the certified school nurses, registered nurses, and licensed practical nurses serving in our schools and health care facilities.
“The work of our school nurses and the nurses in our hospitals and health care settings is improving student health and boosting academic performance,” said PSEA President Rich Askey. “We thank our nurses for being there in emergencies and on a day-to-day basis to meet students’ needs and keep them in the classroom learning.”
Wendy Robison, a school nurse in the Western Beaver County School District and the recipient of the 2021 School Nurse Excellence Award from the Pennsylvania Association of School Nurses and Practitioners, said education is critical when it comes to keeping students in good health.
“My goal is to make sure every child succeeds, no matter what,” Robison said. “That starts with education. School nurses educate the student, the staff, and the families to cultivate healthy habits and improve student outcomes.
“I am in awe every day of the expertise and professionalism that my fellow school nurses bring to our schools all across the commonwealth. It has been a tremendously difficult school year. Many students are hurting, and educators are struggling, too. I am so proud to work in this profession and do what I can to help address students’ health needs and set them on the road to success.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, school nurses also save our communities money. For every $1 invested in school nurses, $2.20 is saved by preventing costly emergency room visits and saving parents from missing work to care for children who are sick.
Askey said that Pennsylvania’s public schools need more nurses to meet the growing health needs of students.
“PSEA is advocating for a state budget that includes a robust investment in our schools so that school districts everywhere in Pennsylvania can hire more school nurses,” Askey said. “Our hardworking and compassionate school nurses are improving the physical, mental and emotional health of students. We look forward to working with Gov. Wolf and lawmakers to get school funding increases that will help students learn and hire the school nurses our students need now more than ever.”
Askey is the president of PSEA. An affiliate of the National Education Association, PSEA represents about 177,000 active and retired educators and school employees, student teachers, higher education staff, and health care workers in Pennsylvania.