PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to investigate the evolution of school nursing in the USA in the early decades of the twentieth century, highlighting the linkages between schools and public health and the challenges nurses faced.Design/methodology/approachThis historical essay examines the discussions about school nursing and school nurses’ descriptions of their work.FindingsIn the Progressive period, though the responsibilities of school nurse were never clearly defined, nurses quickly became accepted, respected members of the school, with few objecting to their practices. Nonetheless, nurses consistently faced financial complications that limited, and continue to limit, their effectiveness in schools and communities.Originality/valueFew histories of school health have documented the critical role nurses have played and their important, although contested, position today. This paper points to the obstacles restricting the development of dynamic school nurse programs today.
History of Education Review – Emerald Publishing
Published: Oct 2, 2017
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