Sherri Nischbach is a School Nurse at Bennett Elementary School in McKinney, Texas. McKinney Independent School District currently enrolls more than 24,500 students in 20 elementary schools, five middle schools, three high schools, two alternative campuses and one early childhood education center.
What do love about being a School Nurse?
Getting to see the kids each year and watching them grow. They kind of become your own kids. With teachers, each year those kids get different teachers, so they have a teacher for a year and then they move on. But with a School Nurse, you stay the same and so you see those kids every single year.
What is the most challenging part of being a School Nurse?
It’s challenging being the only medical person on the campus. Especially if you come from working in a hospital where everyone around you is medical and there’s always someone above you. You always feel like you have that support. If there’s a crisis situation, like we’ve all had, then you have to jump in and be the leader, and you have to delegate to others what you need from them – all while you’re trying to stabilise your patient. Dealing with kids that are medically fragile can be difficult as well, depending on the child’s diagnosis and how aware the parents are and how helpful they are.
What is the most common misconception about School Nurses?
I always thought school nursing would be so easy. But that was a huge awakening because there are so many kids, there are so many things that you deal with. You would think that whole misconception that it’s bellyaches and Band-Aids. It’s the opposite because you’re keeping up with everybody’s immunisations, and you’re doing hearing and vision screenings, and then the kids who can’t afford glasses, you go above and beyond to try to help those families get those kids glasses. You’re dealing with kids with life-threatening allergies and diabetes and seizures. This is not what people think it is. We do treat bellyaches and give out Band-Aids, but there’s so much more to the scope of it that I never realised.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t do something that you hate because life is so short. You need to be happy. Growing up, my family would say you need to do something that you love. If you’re happy, you’re going to make others around you happy as well.
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?
At Student First Aid we recognise and celebrate the good work of School Nurses. Each month we interview a dedicated School Nurse.
If you’re interested, please email email@example.com to arrange a quick and easy phone interview.