Did you ever think you would see this day?
When I started my nursing career, I had just ended my teaching career. School nursing, for me, is the best of both worlds. If you had asked me as a teacher or as a nurse if I would ever see this day, I would have said no. The closure of schools is so impactful on a community. Kids are home without the only two meals a day they get. Some are home without supervision, some with abusive family members. Large employers such as the healthcare industry, are struggling to stay adequately staffed as parents need to stay home with their children. All businesses are struggling. Hourly school employees are scared and uncertain of where their next paycheck will come from. To be completely honest, right now the least of my worries is what these kids might learn academically in the coming days.
Here's what I hope they do learn:
1. Their school is concerned for their well-being. What is your plan to get kids their breakfast and lunch? How are teachers going to try to connect with each and every student to check in on them? Do they have medication housed at school that they need at home now?
2. Their parents are worried, but we are trying to help. For those businesses that HAVE to remain open (healthcare, police, fire, EMS), can your schools open space for childcare (keeping in mind the <50 rule)? If their parent is an hourly school employee, can they help staff that childcare, help with custodial work, do odd jobs to keep themselves on the payclock?
So many more things I could mention, but overall, it's going to be OK. Right now it is chaos, uncertain, constantly changing and quite frankly scary, but we will be ok. Please think about those students who might need a little more support/reassurance than others and reach out to them! And hopefully, if nothing else comes of this pandemic, maybe the schools will feel the need for increased nurse hours in their buildings:)