Shannon David Interview
1. Name and Title as you would like it presented:
Shannon M. David, BSN, RN, NCSN
2. School Name where you work:
Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Catholic School
3. How long have you been a school nurse?
4. Nurses have a lot of options when deciding where to work. How did you choose to work for a local school and what has kept you in school nursing so many years?
Though the days can be long and, at times, stressful, there is not a single day that I have regretted my decision to transition to school nursing (I was an ER nurse for 15 years!). The true blessing of being a school nurse is the opportunity to build lasting relationships with the students and families I serve. So many of “my kids” begin attending the school in preschool and will continue through the completion of 8th grade. I get to know them, their parents, their siblings and, in many instances, grandparents and extended family. Also, I am blessed to work in an environment where my expertise and knowledge are valued by my Principal, the teachers and the staff..
5. What motivates you to make a difference for your students and community?
I truly believe that there are very few reasons a child cannot attend school. When children with unique health challenges, who previously may have been excluded from traditional classrooms, are welcomed into the school environment, overcome challenges and thrive among their peers, I am inspired to continue to work with administrators and educators to create systems where all children have the opportunity to reach their full potential in an environment where they are loved!
6. What is one thing you’d like the community to know about school nurses?
Among the metrics used to monitor the response to the COVID outbreak has been the number of ICU beds available. What has not been communicated as effectively, however, is that an “ICU bed” is only an ICU bed when an ICU nurse stands at its side. Similarly, in the school setting, a “nurse’s office” is only truly a “nurse’s office” when a fully trained, licensed nurse is in the position of school nurse. Too often the role of “school nurse'' is filled by a volunteer, ancillary staff member, or some other school employee. I would like the community to know that school nursing is a separate and distinct specialty within the broader practice of nursing. School nurses must have a breadth and depth of knowledge and clinical expertise that encompass many other specialities. School nurses are experts in communicable disease, management of chronic diseases like asthma and diabetes, acute care for injuries and illness, health education of students and anticipatory guidance for parents. I would encourage parents to find out more about the provision of health services at their school.