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The Relentless School Nurse: 10 Things Parents Can Do Now to Help Prepare Children For Returning to School



School nurses have been industrious during COVID-19, using innovative skills to do one of the things we do best, providing information for our families. Everyone's health literacy has been tested through the pandemic. The messaging from our most trusted institutions like the CDC has been confusing and ever-changing. As states have released vague return to school guidelines, it is clear that the details for keeping our students and staff safe will depend on each school district to create their own policies and procedures. 

One of our newest school nurses, Toni Tomkins is using her unique skillset, making lists, charts, and flyers to create an infographic for her parents to help navigate the tricky waters of COVID-19. Her informative flyer caught my attention and Toni graciously agreed to share her creation with my readers!

Below is Toni's story and her flyer! There is a word document version that can be customizable if you are interested in creating one for your school families.

Toni Tomkins, BSN, RN

My name is Toni Tomkins, BSN, RN. I have been a substitute school nurse at 18 different schools for the past two years within Chesapeake Public Schools. I have two children (19 years old and 6 years old) and a husband in the Navy. This year, I decided to pursue a full-time job at Cedar Road Elementary (PreK - 5).

I’ve always been a proactive individual; making charts, flyers, & schedules are fun and needed since my 6-year-old is on the Autism Spectrum. With 2020-2021 being my first year as a full-time school nurse, I have been listening to tons of Webinars, podcasts, reading medical journals, staying abreast with CDC, our local health department, and state guidelines to educate myself while preparing for this monumental change.

So, there I was, sitting at my home desk with all this information on the tip of my tongue and I didn’t have a platform big enough to gather all the parents around. So, I decided to create a Top 10 flyer for parents in hopes it would help them be more proactive & perhaps ease some transition anxiety for them & their children. I created it because I know as a parent, especially a mom of an ASD child, I would want the same thing provided for me.

(Word) Back-to-school flyer

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