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Celebrating our School Nurses

“The thing about nurses is that you can drop them into any uncharted waters, and usually their response is going to be to put their head down and do the work,” said NEISD’s Assistant Director of Health Services Emma Kelly.

This past year North East ISD’s school nurses were most definitely dropped into uncharted waters. As the world faced off with COVID-19, nurses all over the District had to figure out how to deal with it here at home. For months, our nurses worked very long hours putting everyone else first. 

“Our nurses were literally just on stand by,” said NEISD Nurse Coordinator D’Lynn Haycraft.

“I was bringing my work home,” said Churchill High School Nurse Michelle Douthitt. “I was making phone calls. I was doing contact tracing.”

The entire Health Services team developed new ways to work, figured out how to do contact tracing and just never stopped. They were on the front lines. They had to know the answers. They had to calm fears. They had to be ready for anything. But it wasn’t easy.

“We are not invincible,” said Haycraft. “So many of our nurses were going through tragic and horrible personal things in their life, yet had to kind of leave that at home so they could come and devote all of their time and attention while they were at work.”

They were checking students and staff for symptoms, setting up COVID testing and hearing stories from students about parents dying from COVID.

“I have a family I have been very, very close with for the past four years, and he has a chronic medical condition,” said Douthitt. “This year, he has gone virtual. Both his parents got COVID, and his mother passed away. He and his brother are graduating this year.”

While this year has certainly been different, NEISD nurses do work like this all the time. They save lives constantly. They offer comfort every day. They are the only medical professional some people in their community ever see.

“When COVID appeared, everything else didn’t disappear,” said NEISD’s Director of Health Services Maria Perez. “We still have asthma. We still have diabetes. We still have students we have to medicate. We have to give them treatments. There are emergencies.”

Despite it all, our nurses have shown up day in and day out to help. They genuinely care about the health and well-being of their students and the entire NEISD community. 

“Thank you” doesn’t seem like nearly enough words to convey the appreciation NEISD nurses deserve, but it’s a start. So, thank you nurses, for everything you have done and continue to do for our students, staff and visitors.

National Nurse Week is May 6-12.

School Nurse Day is May 12.

Please take time to thank a nurse for all they do.

Posted by: NEISD Communications
Posted on: 05/10/2021