Frequently Asked Questions

Q.) What is the difference between a Health Assistant/Administrative Assistant and a School Nurse?

A.) A Health Assistant or Administrative Assistant is trained in clerical duties and CPR/First Aid. This is the person in the office who provides first aid care, assists students with medications, and maintains students’ school records. A health assistant is not required to have any formal medical background, but receives training from school nurses in common childhood health issues such as emergency care for children with asthma, diabetes, and life-threatening allergic reactions as well as medication administration training.

A School Nurse is a registered nurse, with a baccalaureate or master’s degree and a Educational Staff Associate credential from the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction and governed by the State of Washington’s Professional Educator Standards Board. The Ferndale School District employs School Nurses and Registered Nurses on their team. The role of the school nurse is to strengthen and facilitate the educational process by improving and protecting the health status of children and by identification and assistance in the removal or modification of health-related barriers to learning in individual children. A school nurse conducts and interprets health and developmental assessments, designs and implements health plans to meet the individual health needs of the students, and conducts health-related in-service training and education.