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Exciting New School Health Supports Coming Soon!

Thanks to a partnership and grant funding from the Minnesota Department of Health, the Minnesota Service Cooperatives are collaborating statewide to support school nurses and school mental health professionals. 

Throughout this ongoing pandemic, school nurses have had to focus on COVID related tasks and as a result have been pulled from many duties that require attention and maintenance. Many school nurses say they are burned out after taking on additional responsibilities related to mitigation strategies and protocols, contact tracing, and addressing indirect health consequences of the pandemic, such as delays in kids getting other critical vaccines or soaring mental health concerns. On top of that, many schools are experiencing challenges when recruiting nurses and struggle to find qualified applicants due to the pre-existing nursing shortage. Compounding the problem, high turnover exacerbates any staffing shortage. MDH and MSC want to help!

To address this critical need, our statewide approach aims to provide regional support to assist schools with their recovery phases by providing nursing and social emotional learning resources. This will include monthly Community of Practice virtual meetings, a school health conference, professional development opportunities, an online repository of resources, and other solutions that will support these essential workers!

To that end, Southeast Service Cooperative is thrilled to introduce Dr. Kara DeLaFosse, who brings with her a Doctorate of Education (Ed.D), Master of Nursing Education (MSN), Bachelor of Nursing (BSN), Bachelor of Early Childhood Education (BS. Ed), and Public Health Nursing (PHN) certifications.  She has been instrumental in building up the Certified Nursing Assistant program at Riverland Community College and has played an integral role in launching Governor Walz’s Next Generation Nursing Assistant Initiative.  Dr. Kara will be reaching out to school nurses at districts in southeast Minnesota to assess needs that could be met through regional collaboration.  In the meantime, don’t hesitate to reach out to her at kdelafosse@ssc.coop or 507-273-9730