Saw on my WMUR update and after years of experience with school nurses I had to share. Their job has always been a demanding and thankless one but the added pressure of this year must be daunting. Thank you for all you do! – Lil

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How many times this summer did you have a scratchy throat or a cough and wonder, even for a moment, whether it was just allergies or COVID-19? Now, imagine you’re a school nurse with years of experience helping sniffling kids with colds or allergies, but now, you have to figure out if they have COVID-19 instead. That’s what school nurses are facing this year. They’re on the front line as many schools try to keep students in classrooms instead of switching to remote learning. They’re the ones who could stop a single case or two from becoming an outbreak, but they’re being placed in the tough situation of trying to determine whether a student might be infected with the coronavirus or just have allergies.

School nurses say there are ways to make their task easier. Parents can make sure their child’s school nurse knows whether they have a chronic condition such as allergies, and doctors could be proactive in ordering COVID-19 tests for any suspect cases. And all the precautions at schools could be wasted if students go home to communities where masks aren’t being worn and physical distancing isn’t taking place.

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