The Virginia Association of School Nurses (VASN) was established in 1984, then in1985 we became, and have remained, a unified membership affiliate of the National Association of School Nurses. VASN believes that as the school health expert in their schools, all School Nurses are leaders and should work to advance the interests of School Nurses and the students they serve. I joined VASN in 2005 while at the VASN Annual Fall Conference. I recognized that although politics may be local, the legislation and funding for schools - including guidelines and funding of school nurse positions - are state level issues and may best be addressed by working through the Virginia Association of School Nurses. Since joining I have represented VASN as the liaison to the EMS for Children committee since 2006, and became the NASN Director for Virginia in January of this year. Over the past 13 years with VASN I have served as the Region VI Director, Parliamentarian, conference presenter, President-Elect, President, and Past President.
The core purpose/mission of VASN is to develop and provide leadership and education to advance the practice of school nursing and support the health and academic success of children and youth. I have strengthened my voice through much of the leadership and advocacy education provided by NASN and VASN, and through the opportunities to practice leadership and advocacy skills in VASN, and now NASN. To strengthen the voice of VASN's 531 members and all School Nurses in the Commonwealth, VASN has liaisons or representation in many of our partner organizations including the Virginia Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) Committee, Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN), Legislative Coalition of Virginia Nurses (LCVN), National Board for Certification of School Nurses (NBCSN), School Nurse Institute Partnership (SNIP), School Nurse Supervisors/Coordinators/Points of Contact, Virginia Action for Healthy Kids Coalition, Virginia Asthma Coalition (VAC), Virginia Board of Nursing (BON), Virginia Healthcare Foundation, Virginia Council for Private Education (VCPE), Virginia High School League (VHSL), Virginia Parent Teacher Association (VPTA) Health Committee, Virginia Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and Voices for Virginia’s Children. By having a seat at these tables VASN builds better understand throughout our Commonwealth of the importance of student access to School Nurses and the vital role School Nurses have in helping students reach their best health and academic potential.
VASN is proud to be an approved provider of continuing nursing education hours, and works to help school nurses maintain current evidenced based practice, and develop leadership and advocacy skills through our Annual Fall Conference and our partnership each summer with the Virginia Department of Education at their Summer Institute for School Nurses. Work with your affiliate to find YOUR voice, represent School Nurses on a committee, as a liaison or as an officer, tell YOUR story, and continue to strive to advance the practice of school nursing and support the health and academic success of children and youth by establishing access for all students to a School Nurse all day, every day. #NASNat50 #50schoolnursebloggers#NASNat50