Approved Courses for Nurses with an Associate Degree in Nursing
For registered nurses with an Associate Degree in Nursing, a 3-credit course in community or public health nursing from a baccalaureate accredited nursing program will meet the requirement for the “School Nurse” title per Wisc. Stat. sec. 115.001(11).
A public health or community health nursing course offered by a school accredited by the Higher Learning Commission must align with the standards for public health nursing content as prescribed for baccalaureate nursing programs accredited by a national professional nursing education organization. This would include, at a minimum, all of the following topics:
- Foundations and concepts of community health nursing, including epidemiological principles.
- Policies affecting the delivery of community health nursing services. The content shall prepare school nurses to apply local, state, and federal policies to the community health nursing setting.
- Models of community health assessment. The content shall prepare school nurses to:
- Assess protective and predictive factors, including genetics, which influence the health of individuals, families, groups, communities, and populations.
- Assess health/illness beliefs, values, attitudes, and practices of individuals, families, groups, communities, and populations.
- Evidence-based community health interventions used at the individual and community levels. The content shall prepare school nurses to:
- Participate in clinical prevention and population focused interventions with attention to effectiveness, efficiency, cost effectiveness, and equity.
- Use evidence-based practices to guide health teaching, health counseling, screening, outreach, disease and outbreak investigation, referral, and follow up throughout the lifespan.
- The impact of social, cultural, political, and environmental factors on individual and population health. The content shall prepare school nurses to:
- Collaborate with others to develop an intervention plan that takes into account determinants of health, available resources, and the range of activities that contribute to health and the prevention of illness, injury, disability, and premature death.
- Advocate for social justice, including a commitment to the health of vulnerable populations and the elimination of health disparities.
This content is typically covered in a three-credit college course. Additional topics may be included in the course but are not required for this purpose. There are many courses offered at area universities as well as online options.
Programs that have been submitted and reviewed by the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) include:
- School Nurse Course—UW System: N470 School Nursing in the Context of Community Health Practice: The School of Nursing has developed a 3-credit online option for N470 School Nursing in the Context of Community Health Practice. The 3-credit option is for associate degree prepared RNs who seek a community health course in order to practice as a school nurse. The course is offered fall and spring semesters each year. Course description.
- Grand Canyon University NRS-415 Health Promotion and Population Health – 3 credits
- Walden University NURS 4210: Role of the Nurse Leader in Population Health (5 quarter hours)
- Chamberlain University NR 443: RN Community Health Nursing
To document that a registered nurse without a baccalaureate degree in nursing meets the course requirement to be considered a school nurse requires a copy of a transcript. The transcript from an institution of higher education documenting a passing grade in a public health nursing or community health nursing course deemed satisfactory must be submitted to the State School Nurse Consultant.
If the course is not from an approved nursing course (see above list), a copy of the syllabus must be submitted to DPI. It is suggested that before taking course work towards earning the title School Nurse the registered nurse have the prospective course approved.