Anyone who has ever skinned a knee on the school playground knows the importance of the school nurse. From taking temperatures to wiping tears from upset faces that miss mom, school nurses offer more than just first aid. School nurses working in Illinois will need to register with the state prior to applying for a job with a school district.
The average salary for a school nurse working in the state of Illinois is $64,749, as of March 2011, according to CareerBuilder.com. The job search website places Illinois slightly lower than the national average of $65,749 annual compensation. The average annual pay range for school nurses in Illinois goes from a low of $38,036 to a high of $82,260.
A school nurse makes sure students are physically cared for while in the care of the school system. She promotes good health by administering first aid to students, makes sure student health records are up-to-date, and conducts health screenings, such as lice checks and hearing exams.
To work in a school in Illinois, a nurse must obtain a certification from the state. Applicants must have a bachelor's degree and already be licensed as a registered nurse, as outlined under the Nursing and Advanced Practice Nursing Act of the State of Illinois. They must also complete an approved program for instruction as a school nurse, and pass the School Nurse (182) test, according to the Illinois State Board of Education.
Continuing Education and Associations
The State of Illinois requires school nurses to be renew their license to practice as a school nurse every five years. Part of the process is to show the completion of continuing education credits. The Illinois Association of School Nurses helps school nurses find approved courses, and makes sure school nurses are up to date with regulation changes.