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Roane County School District

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Coordinated Health » Health Services

Health Services

Health services are provided and/or supervised by school health nurses to appraise, protect, and promote the health of students. These services include assessment, planning, coordination of services and direct care for all children, including those with special health care needs. Health services are designed and coordinated with community health care professionals to ensure early intervention, access and referral to primary health care services; foster appropriate use of primary health care services; prevent and control communicable disease and other health problems; provide emergency care for student and staff illness or injury; provide daily and continuous services for children with special health care needs; promote and provide optimum sanitary conditions for a safe school facility and school environment; and provide educational and counseling opportunities for promoting and maintaining individual, family and community health. Qualified professionals such as school health nurses, physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, dentists, health educators, registered dietitians, school counselors, and allied health personnel including speech therapists and occupational or physical therapists provide these services.
Free health screenings will be conducted at your child’s school at various times during the school year. In addition to highlighting any health issues that may affect your child’s academic success, these screenings will also inform parents about any possible changes in their child’s health and allowing them to pursue preventative steps and/or medical advice if necessary.

The following health screenings will be conducted as follows for grades K, 2nd, 4th, 6th , 8th and 9th:
Scoliosis ( 6th grade only; screenings by Active Family & Sport Chiropractic)
Blood pressure
Height and Weight (BMI)
Head lice screening at any grade level when appropriate

The Tennessee Department of Health has immunization requirements for those who attend child care, pre-school, and school.  The requirements can be found in the Tennessee Department of Health Rules.

The state’s immunization requirements follow the current schedule published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).

Children enrolling in Kindergarten

  • Hepatitis B (HBV)
  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis (DTaP, or DT if appropriate)
  • Poliomyelitis (IPV or OPV) - final dose on or after the 4th birthday
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella - 2 doses of each, usually given together as MMR
  • Varicella - 2 doses or credible history of disease
  • Hepatitis A - total of 2 doses, spaced at least 6 - 18 months apart

All children entering 7th grade (including currently enrolled students)


Children who are new enrollees in a TN school in grades other than Kindergarten

  • Hepatitis B (HBV)
  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis (DTaP, or DT if appropriate)
  • Poliomyelitis (IPV or OPV - final dose on or after the 4th birthday
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella - 2 doses of each, normally given together as MMR
  • Varicella - 2 doses or credible history of disease
  • New students entering grades other than 7th grade are not required to have Tdap

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), students diagnosed with live head lice do not need to be sent home early from school; they can go home at the end of the day, be treated, and return to class after appropriate treatment has begun. Nits may persist after treatment, but successful treatment should kill crawling lice.

Head lice can be a nuisance but they have not been shown to spread disease. Personal hygiene or cleanliness in the home or school has nothing to do with getting head lice.


RCS Board Policy 6.4031 (Head Lice)



Influenza (flu) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by  Some people, such as older people, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at higher risk of serious flu complications.  There are two main types of influenza (flu) viruses: Types A and B. The influenza A and B viruses that routinely spread in people (human influenza viruses) are responsible for seasonal flu epidemics each year.  The best way to reduce the risk of flu and its potentially serious complications is by getting vaccinated each year.

MRSA or Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus is a type of skin infection that is resistant to certain types of antibiotics. Research indicates 85% of all serious cases of the infection are associated with health care settings, while the remaining 15% of reported infections are considered community-acquired.  MRSA infections are generally spread by skin-to-skin contact or by direct contact with the drainage from an infected wound. Community-associated MRSA can be spread occasionally by contact with contaminated surfaces or items such as sports equipment or  personal hygiene items.
Meningitis is an inflammation (swelling) of the protective membranes covering the brain and spinal cord. A bacterial or viral infection of the fluid surrounding the brain and spinal cord usually causes the swelling. However, injuries, cancer, certain drugs, and other types of infections also can cause meningitis. It is important to know the specific cause of meningitis because the treatment differs depending on the cause.

Norovirus is a very contagious virus that causes vomiting and diarrhea. Anyone can get infected and sick with norovirus.


Many viruses and bacteria can cause acute pharyngitis. Streptococcus pyogenes, which are also called group A Streptococcus or group A strep, cause acute pharyngitis known as strep throat.


Ringworm is a common skin infection that is caused by a fungus. It’s called “ringworm” because it can cause a circular rash (shaped like a ring) that is usually red and itchy. Anyone can get ringworm. The fungi that cause this infection can live on skin, surfaces, and on household items such as clothing, towels, and bedding.  Ringworm goes by many names. The medical terms are “tinea” or “dermatophytosis.” Other names for ringworm are based on its location on the body – for example, ringworm on the feet is also called “athlete’s foot.”

People often call conjunctivitis “pink eye” because it can cause the white of the eye to take on a pink or red color. Symptoms of pink eye can vary but typically include redness or swelling of the white of the eye.
Bed bugs are small, flat insects.  Bed bugs are reddish-brown in color and do not fly.  Bed bug eggs and nymphs are tiny and can be very difficult to see.  Bed bug adults can be up to 1/3 inch or about the size of President Lincoln’s head on a penny.
Bed bugs often bite people at night during sleep.  One of the easiest ways to identify a bed bug infestation is by the tell-tale bite marks on the face, neck, arms, hands or any other body parts while sleeping.  It is important to look for other bed bug clues where you sleep.  These clues include bed bug skins after molting, blood spots on bedding, or a sweet musty odor.

According to the National Association of School Nurses, after the child’s home, school represents the second most influential environment in a child’s life.  The role of the school nurse includes both health and educational goals.  There is a recognized relationship between health and learning, as there is between nurse availability and student well-being and educational success.  Students today may face family crises, homelessness, immigration, poverty, and violence, which increase both their physical and mental health needs.  School nurses perform a vital role within the school health program by focusing on these health problems faced by children.  School nurses need to be physically present in schools to address these responsibilities appropriately.  Improved student performance results where schools have a full-time school nurse. 

The National Association of School Nurses identifies 7 core roles that the school nurse fulfills to encourage child and adolescent health and educational success. The school nurse:

1.      Provides direct care to students,

2.      Provides leadership for delivering health services,

3.      Provides screening and referral for health conditions,

4.      Promotes a healthy school environment,

5.      Promotes health,

6.      Serves in a leadership role for school health policies and programs, and

7.      Acts as a liaison between school staff, family, health care professionals, and the community.

For a school nurse to function properly, they need cooperation of the entire school community, including the school staff, parents, the child, and school administration. 

Do not send your child to school if they are in pain, are lethargic, obviously sick, with fever, feel nauseated, are vomiting, have an unidentified rash, or have diarrhea.

Teach your children to do basic infection controls such as washing their hands, coughing into their elbows, and proper nose blowing.

Provide the school nurse with proper items to administer required medications to your child.  These items would include routine and as-needed medications, epi pens, diabetic supplies, and any supplies needed for various procedures performed on the student on a daily basis as ordered by their physician and requested by their parents.

The Nurse’s Office can be a soft place to land for a student.  Sometimes a student just needs a hug or someone to talk to during an especially trying day.  School nurse’s can provide this type of support.

School nurses also provide services to school staff; providing routine blood pressure checks, counseling, and emergency care.