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A new bespoke training course has been launched to help equip school nurses with the skills and knowledge they need to best support children and young people in their return to school amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The free resource will be provided by the School and Public Health Nurses Association (SAPHNA) and Creative Education to 2,000 school nursing professionals, thanks to a Covid-19 grant from the Burdett Trust for Nursing.
“School nursing services are ideally placed to support them and our schools to help them to restore and recover”
Schools across the UK have been largely closed to students during the pandemic, with some opening to selected year groups in recent weeks.
The new resource aims to help school nurses in supporting children on their return to education later this year, with many set to re-open in September.
The training will cover issues such as “emotionally-based school avoidance”, bereavement and whole school health and wellbeing, delivered through a mixture of e-learning modules and live webinars.
Courses will start in July and run for three months.
Commenting on the project, chief executive of SAPHNA, Sharon White, said: “All of us have suffered the trauma of Covid-19 to some degree or other, how we bounce back from this depends on a host of things including our protective factors.
“Many of these such as Covid-19 induced social isolation, home education, loss of extended networks, housing, poverty, employment and much more have both directly and indirectly affected our children.”
She stressed that school nursing services were “ideally placed to support them and our schools to minimise the impact and help them to restore and recover”.
“We are beyond delighted to be working closely with Creative Education who share in our common vision and values,” added Ms White.
Dr Pooky Knightsmith, mental health educator, speaker, author and advisor, is the director of the project.
She said it was a “privilege” to lead the initiative, adding that the new resource would be of “benefit to pupils but also to whole school communities”.
“I can’t wait to get started and look forward to working with and learning from school health teams as we find ways forwards together,” added Dr Knightsmith.
Staff have until 20 July to register for the course and can do so here: https://saphna.co/news/saphna-and-creative-education-soft-landings-project/