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School Nursing and Health - School Nurse Basics
Welcome to School Nursing in Colorado! This webpage is designed to give school nurses an overview of foundational resources used in Colorado School Nursing Practice.
Tips to help you get started:
- Join the School Nurse Listserv - This is how important information on trainings and updates in school nursing are emailed to Colorado School Nurses.
- Sign up for Trainings for New School Nurses - We provide trainings throughout the year for new school nurses and an annual School Nurse Orientation in July.
- Download the School Nurse Calendar (PDF 6/2021) - This calendar guides the school nurse throughout the school year.
- Bookmark the School Nursing and Health Home Page for quick reference.
- Review CDE Special Service Provider Licensure information below.
- Sign up for CIIS (Colorado Immuniziation Information System) to access immunization records.
- Contact a CDE School Nurse Specialist for any questions! We are here to help!
Following are a collection of key documents and links to content found throughout the School Nursing and Health website for quick reference.
Colorado Guidance Documents
- Colorado Medication Administration Guidelines (Aug 2019 PDF)
- Infectious Disease in Child Care and Schools Guidelines (CDPHE)
- Colorado Emergency Guidelines for Schools (2016 PDF)
- Vision Screening Guidelines: K-12 (Jan 2016 PDF)
- Hearing Screening Guidelines (June 2017 PDF)
- How Sick is Too Sick English l Spanish (CDPHE)
Important Links to Explore
- Essential School Health Services - identifies which services are mandated (link below under school nurse practice)
- Rules and Regulations Governing Schools in the State of Colorado (PDF 3/17/2018)
- Rules and Regulations Governing the Health and Sanitation of Child Care Facilities (PDF 2016)
- Colorado Nurse Practice Act
- Chapter 13 - Rules and Regulations Regarding the Delegation of Nursing Tasks (PDF - Start on pg 81. 3 CCR 716-1 effective 7/12/21)
- Rules for Administration of Medications (1 CRR 301-68) (PDF 2019)
- CPR for Coaches (HB 14-2176)
Initial Special Service Provider (SSP) License
New school nurses must apply with the Colorado Department of Education for a SSP License. Generally, the Initial SSP license is applied for; however school nurses who do not yet meet the requirements for this license may apply for a Temporary Educator License (TEE).
Why do I need a Special Service Provider License from CDE if I already hold a Registered Nurse License through DORA?
School nurse services are services provided by a qualified school nurse. Per the Exceptional Children's Educational Act (ECEA) Rules March 2016, 1 CCR 301-8, 2.37(3)(m), all related services personnel providing services to children with disabilities shall hold Colorado special services licenses or certificates with appropriate endorsements.
How do I apply for a Special Service Provider License?
- Requirements for Special Service Provider Endorsement as a School Nurse
- Application Process for Special Service Provider License
- CDE Licensing Office home page
- Email CDELicensing@cde.state.co.us for questions about licensure requirements
Advancing from Initial SSP license to Professional SSP license
The Initial SSP license expires in 3 years; prior to expiration, the school nurse will need to apply for a Professional SSP license. To advance from an Initial SSP license to a Professional SSP license, you will need a certificate verifying completion of an induction program specific to the license you wish to advance (ie, Special Service Provider with School Nurse endorsement). Induction programs are provided by your school (public, private or charter), Charter School Institute, or BOCES. The induction program requirements include two semesters of mentoring.
- Public School Districts: School nurses should work with their supervisor or district “Induction Coordinator” to locate a school nurse mentor.
- Charter Schools Under the Authority of a Public School District: Charter schools under the authority of a school district should work with their supervisor or district “Induction Coordinator” to locate a school nurse mentor.
- Charter Schools under the Authority of Charter School Institute (CSI): Charter schools under the authority of CSI should contact CSI to locate a school nurse mentor.
- Private Schools: Private schools that offer a CDE approved induction program can also provide a school nurse mentor.
- The Colorado Department of Education (CDE) School Nurse Mentoring Program: School nurses who are enrolled in a CDE approved induction program through their school, CSI, or BOCES, but don’t have access to an experienced mentor, may be eligible for the CDE School Nurse Mentoring Program. If you are interested in exploring this option, please complete this mentor program request form.
CDE Mentoring Forms - these forms are provided as samples and are not required
- Essential School Health Services
- Code of Ethics for Nursing Practice (Available for Purchase from ANA)
- Standards of School Nursing Practice (For purchase from NASN)
- Colorado Nurse Practice Act
- CDE Scope and Practice of School Nursing: Educator Licensing Act of 1991 (pages 157-161) CCR 301-37
- Colorado Registered Nurse Licensure: Colorado Board of Nursing
- Optional Certification: National Board for Certification of School Nurses Nationally Certified School Nurse (NCSN)