2229 112th CONGRESS
H. R. 2229
To make demonstration grants to eligible local
educational agencies for the purpose of reducing the student-to-school nurse ratio
in public elementary schools and secondary schools.IN
THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
June 16, 2011
MCCARTHY of New York (for herself, Mrs. CAPPS, Mr. FARR, Ms. NORTON, Mr. JACKSON
of Illinois, Ms. BORDALLO, Ms. MOORE, Mr. HINCHEY, Mr. PASCRELL, and Mr. HOLT)
introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Education
and the Workforce, and in addition to the Committee on Energy and Commerce, for
a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration
of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned
To make demonstration grants
to eligible local educational agencies for the purpose of reducing the student-to-school
nurse ratio in public elementary schools and secondary schools.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States
of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the `Student-to-School Nurse Ratio Improvement Act of
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
The Congress finds the
(1) The American Academy of Pediatrics emphasizes
the crucial role school nurses have in the seamless provision of comprehensive
health services to children and youth, as well as in the development of a coordinated
school health program.
(2) The school nurse functions
as a leader and the coordinator of the school health services team, facilitating
access to a medical home for each child and supporting school achievement.
(3) Recent national data indicates 45 percent of public schools have a school
nurse all day, every day, while another 30 percent of schools have a school nurse
who works part time in 1 or more schools.
(4) The American
Nurses Association has reported that when there is no registered nurse on the
school premises, the responsibility to administer the necessary medications and
treatments, and appropriate monitoring of the children falls on the shoulders
of administrators, educators, and staff who are ill-prepared to perform these
(5) Statistics from the National Center for Educational
Statistics indicate that of the 52,000,000 children who currently spend their
day in schools, 16 percent have chronic physical, emotional, or other health problems.
(6) A recent study indicated that from 2002 to 2008, the percentage of children
in special education with health impairments, due to chronic or acute health problems,
increased 60 percent. Within this group, the rate of autism has doubled since
(7) A 40-percent increase in asthma has been seen
in the past 10 years, along with nearly 50-percent increase in the incidence of
diabetes in the same time period.
(8) According to the
American Academy of Pediatrics, students today face increased social issues as
well as the need for preventative services and interventions for acute and chronic
(9) The Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention report that the percentage of children without health insurance was
8.9 percent in 2008, and with over 1,300,000 homeless children in the United States,
schools have become the only source of health care for many children and adolescents.
(10) Communicable and infectious diseases account for millions of school days
lost each year. There is reported evidence that school nurses have a positive
impact on immunization rates, with fewer parent requested exemptions.
(11) A recent study showed that students with health concerns attended to by school
nurses were able to return to class 95 percent of time, while students attended
to by nonlicensed staff were only able to return to class 82 percent of the time.
(12) Using a formula-based approach for determining a balanced student-to-school
nurse ratio offers a reasonable means for achieving better student outcomes.
3. REDUCING STUDENT-TO-SCHOOL NURSE RATIOS.
(1) IN GENERAL- The Secretary of Education, in consultation
with the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Director of the Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention, may make demonstration grants to eligible
local educational agencies for the purpose of reducing the student-to-school nurse
ratio in public elementary schools and secondary schools.
(2) APPLICATION- To receive a grant under this section, an eligible local educational
agency shall submit to the Secretary of Education an application at such time,
in such manner, and containing such information as the Secretary of Education
may require, which shall include information with respect to the current ratios
of students-to-school nurses in each of the public elementary secondary and secondary
schools served by the agency.
(3) PRIORITY- In awarding
grants under this section, the Secretary of Education shall give priority to applications
submitted by high-need local educational agencies that demonstrate the greatest
need for new or additional nursing services among students in the public elementary
secondary and secondary schools served by the agency.
(4) MATCHING FUNDS- The Secretary of Education may require recipients of grants
under this section to provide matching funds from non-Federal sources, and shall
permit the recipients to match funds in whole or in part with in-kind contributions.
(b) Report- Not later than 24 months after the date on which a grant is first
made to a local educational agency under this section, the Secretary of Education
shall submit to the Congress a report on the results of the demonstration grant
program carried out under this section, including an evaluation--
(1) of the effectiveness of the program in reducing the student-to-school nurse
ratios described in subsection (a)(1); and
(2) of the
impact of any resulting enhanced health of students on learning.
(c) Definitions- For purposes of this section:
(1) The terms
`elementary school', `local educational agency', `poverty line', and `secondary
school' have the meanings given to those terms in section 9101 of the Elementary
and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801).
(2) The term `eligible local educational agency' means a local educational agency
in which the student-to-school nurse ratio in each public elementary and secondary
school served by the agency is 750 or more students to 1 school nurse.
(3) The term `high-need local educational agency' means a local educational agency--
(A) that serves not fewer than 10,000 children from families with incomes below
the poverty line; or
(B) for which not less
than 20 percent of the children served by the agency are from families with incomes
below the poverty line.
(4) The term `nurse' means
a licensed nurse, as defined under State law.
of Appropriations- There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be
necessary to carry out this section for each of the fiscal years 2012 through