Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Nurses 'in every secondary school'

  • 1 Comment

Wales’s health minister Edwina Hart has announced plans for every secondary school to have its own nurse within a year.

It is part of a One Wales commitment to improving children’s health and increasing the number of nurses to provide children with a point of medical contact.

Tina Donnelly, director of RCN Wales, said: “People often call school nurses the nit nurse and think they are just people who look at children’s hair and teeth on a regular basis, but that’s completely out of date.

“School nurses are the first point of contact for children with problems at home; with bullying; who are being abused at home or who are exposed to drug or alcohol abuse.

“This is everyday, run of the mill work for school nurses, but they also give advice about sex education, about healthy eating and the impact of exercise.”

The RCN is calling for school nurses to be available to school children 365 days a year, not just during term time. Rosemary Kennedy, Wales’ chief nursing officer, said: “The needs of children and young people, particularly those who are vulnerable, do not stop once they walk out of the school gates.”

The Government is to provide initial funding for the scheme, to ensure enough nurses are appointed, but health boards will have to cover the costs from 2011.

At present, the provision of nurses in Wales is not uniform, with some schools only getting a nurse for one afternoon every few weeks.


Nursing Times practice content

Registering for free on gives you access to thousands of peer-reviewed articles that will help you improve your nursing practice.

Register now >>

After you register, you’ll have access to our practice archive, including all-time favourites such as:

  • 1 Comment

Readers' comments (1)

  • Natalie Jewell

    I agree in an ideal world this is a great idea but the world is far from ideal. School nurses are under such pressure to deliver but are rarely well resourced. We buy our own toiletries and sanitary products because the Trusts won't provide us with this simple commodity for our puberty sessions. We have to fight to be given condoms for our demonstrations. Every few months a new advert goes out for new school nurses but there aren't enough nurses with the specialist qualification and community staff nurses get bored with their remit. We need to get community nurses in and put them on a development programme which enables them to reach school nurse level. This isn't going to take a year to implement but it needs to take of if we are going to have a school nurse in each secondary school.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.