Records show every public school in Escambia County does not have a nurse

September 28, 2017

I spoke with former School Board member Jeff Bergosh. He said the District uses a private company, Pediatric Services of America, that provides one health technician for every school, some of which maybe nurses. The larger schools are the ones to most likely have such a nurse, according to Bergosh. Sherwood Elementary had 614 students last year

I found the contract for Pediatric Services of America. It states the company will provide 47.5 health technicians and five heath technician floats. No mention of school nurses.

Just to be sure, we’ve made a public record request for the list of nurses and health technicians at every elementary school.

Why didn’t Superintendent Malcolm Thomas mention Pediatric Services of America?

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  • Reply Arr Enn September 30, 2017 at 3:46 pm

    I understand your issue was that Mr. Thomas initially stated that there is a nurse at every school. I am very aware there is not. I am also aware which schools have nurses full-time. Besides those you listed, Bailey Middle School and Washington High School also have nurses. There is an RN that oversees the entire program, and an RN who is an Assistant Program Manager. As for the remainder of Escambia County Schools, on average, there is one RN supervisor for 4 schools- usually (although not always) 2 elementart, 1 middle and 1 high school.

    In Santa Rosa County, the ratio to RNs to Health Technician/Schools is even lower- they have 1 RN to every 5-6 schools.

    • Reply Rick Outzen October 1, 2017 at 3:25 pm

      Arr Err
      Thanks for the information. Having an RN oversee the program and having RN supervisor for every four schools is not having one in every school – which is the point of this post. We were trying to correct a misstatement put out by the school district. Also we’re talking about an elementary school with Pre-K students, not Bailey Middle or Washington High. And the boy was a special needs student according to other news reports – what was the medical plan for his special needs? Were a health technician and roaming RN supervisor sufficient to take care of the four-year-old?

      We look forward to the sheriff’s office’s findings.


  • Reply Arr Enn September 29, 2017 at 6:34 pm

    You did not find the entire contract At a minimum, one nurse supervises the health technicians at 4 schools. Some schools have a nurse as well as a health technician on staff full time (see pages 15, 20, 22 and 28)

    • Reply Rick Outzen September 30, 2017 at 8:03 am

      Arr Enn,
      The three schools with nurses are the special needs public schools – McMillan Pre-K, Holm Elementary and Westgate.There was no nurse in the clinic at Sherwood Elementary. Thomas initially told the PNJ reporter that every school had a nurse and health technician. Martha Hanna repeated the same misinformation. Later Thomas walked back his comment and said every school has a health technician, but not a nurse. The contract confirms that. Here are the few exceptions: Holm Elementary has a Registered Nurse (RN) and Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) to deal with special needs students and Westgate has a RN. There is an RN that oversees the entire system (page 23). McMillian has three RNs for Pre-K (page 29)–which begs the question why didn’t Sherwood have for over its Pre-K program, especially since Anderson was a special needs student. There is an attachment for the School District to have Pediatric Services of America provide a nurse for the ESE students – one-on-one care (page 33). We have requested a list of the nurses in each elementary school and will publish it once we receive it.

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