Shireen Linton is School Health Nurse in Neath Port Talbot, Wales. As students progress through school, the School Health Nurse contributes to ongoing health promotion and health education lessons including topics like hand washing, healthy eating and hygiene. The school health nurse provides the pupils with the opportunity to ask questions and discuss issues in a safe environment.
What’s the best part of your job?
It is nice to be able to work with children who are well, as the majority of the children in school are. It is our job to make sure they have the advice and support they need for a healthy future.
Do you make a difference?
I do feel that our role really does make a difference. We are educating the children while they are still young, teaching them how to access help when they need it. We want to help them make decisions, which will positively affect the rest of their lives.
Does your role extend beyond education?
Another part of our role is safeguarding children. Sometimes things can happen in a child’s life, such as a bereavement, redundancy, or illness, which may mean they need extra support. On these occasions, meetings are held between all those who can help, and we are invited. We take on any actions that could benefit the child’s health or wellbeing.
Do you undertake home visits?
Sometimes when parents have any concerns about their child’s health and wellbeing, they ask for a home visit. By meeting at home, we learn more about the environment the child lives in, as well as their hygiene and eating habits. It enables us to see where we can help.
How does life as an Australian School Nurse compare? Would you like to share a day in your life as a School Nurse?
How do you go about helping improve the health and wellbeing of students? What’s your biggest challenge? What support do you need to do a better job as a School Nurse?
We’re creating a new feature that recognises and celebrates the good work of School Nurses around Australia. Each month we’d like to interview a dedicated School Nurse.
Ideally the questions and answers will reveal some unexpected insights that will encourage greater communication and benefit other School Nurses.
If you’re interested, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a quick and easy phone interview.