School Nurse’s Corner

School Nurse

Becky Cotter, 231.876.2303, rcotter[at]

Welcome to the Wexford-Missaukee Intermediate School District’s school nurse’s corner. This is the place for staff, students, and parents to come and get information about health and wellness. My goal is to promote the health and safety of students so that they can come to school ready to learn. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. I look forward to hearing from you!

School Nurse’s Role

The role of the school nurse is to strengthen and facilitate the education of students by improving and protecting their heath and wellness. The school nurse’s main focus is on prevention of illness or disability, and the early detection and correction of health problems.

In order to achieve the goal of keeping students healthy and ready to learn the school nurse collaborates with students, families, teachers, as well as other members of the interdisciplinary team.

On a daily basis the school nurse’s role may include:

  1. Assessing the health and developmental status of students.
  2. Communicating with students, families, and health care providers.
  3. Interpreting the health assessment and medical information for staff that work closely with students.
  4. Designing and implementing an individual health plan, emergency care plan, individual care plan, or section 504 plan related to physical health care needs or chronic illness.
  5. Determining the appropriate care for students with health care needs and supervising licensed and unlicensed staff providing that care.
  6. Counseling students and parents regarding health issues and providing information and referrals to community services.
  7. Administering and monitoring medications.
  8. Providing training and in-services to staff on a variety of health topics.
  9. Promoting a healthy and safe school environment for the health and safety of students.

Release to Return to School

To ensure safety and appropriate care, any student returning to school after Hospital/Emergency room/Physician’s care, must present a note from the health care provider.
The note must include:

  1. The date that they may return to school.
  2. Any restrictions, limitations, specific care procedures, medications to be given at school, or new assistive devices (crutches, wheelchair, sling, cast, etc.) required by the student.
  3. The length of time they will be required.
  4. Students will not be allowed to attend school without this documentation.

Not Feeling Well?

If your child is sick please keep him or her home until he or she is feeling better. Our illness policy here at the ISD requires that students with a temperature over 100 degrees or students who are vomiting or have severe diarrhea must stay home in order to prevent the spread of communicable illnesses to others. Illnesses with mild signs and symptoms can be coped with here at school. Please remember that your child needs to be fever free without medication for 24 hours before returning to school.

Colds: The common cold may include symptoms such as a sniffle or runny nose, feeling tired and not well, cough, sore throat, and a low grade fever (under 100). To alleviate the symptoms of the common cold be sure to drink plenty of fluids and take Ibuprofen or Tylenol as directed by your health care provider.

Influenza (Flu): The seasonal flu may include such symptoms as a fever (often over 100), cough, sore throat, headaches, body aches, chills, severe fatigue, and chest discomfort. The flu should be treated much the same as the common cold with lots of fluids, rest, and Tylenol or Ibuprofen as directed by your health care provider.

H1N1 flu: The symptoms are the same as the flu, but they are more severe and may include vomiting.

Stomach virus (Stomach flu): Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and sometimes a fever. Eat bland foods (BRAT diet- Bananas, Rice, Apples, and Toast) and drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration.

Drinking plenty of water is always important especially when you are sick!

All viruses are very contagious! Remember to wash your hands before eating, and after using the bathroom. Avoid touching your face or rubbing your eyes, germs enter the body through the mouth, nose, and eyes. Cover your cough with your sleeve or tissue and wash your hands afterwards.


The Michigan Department of Community Health requires that every student entering a Michigan school be vaccinated against Polio, Diphtheria, Pertussis, Tetanus, Measles, Mumps, Rubella and Chicken Pox. If students are not up to date on these required immunizations exclusion from school may be enforced.

State law requires that these immunizations be completed or updated in order to continue school attendance.

Students may be readmitted to school once documentation is provided to show that the series of immunizations have been started.

The District Health Department has a vaccine clinic, follow the link below for more information and schedule.

District Health Department #10

Influenza (Flu)

The Flu season typically runs October through May and peaks in February. The CDC recommends getting a annual flu vaccine for everyone 6 months of age and older as the most important means of protecting yourself from the flu.

There are many strains of the flu, however research is done every year to predict which strains are likely to cause the most illness each year. The flu vaccine is equipped to vaccinate against the top three strains of the flu.

Getting the flu vaccine as soon as it becomes available is the most efficient way to protect yourself from the flu for the entire flu season.

Flu vaccines are offered in many locations, including doctor’s offices, clinics, health departments, pharmacies and college health centers, as well as by many employers.

Be sure to get your family vaccinated against the flu this season.

Medication Administration

Whenever possible it is recommended that you give your children their medication at home. However, medication can be administered as needed here at school. Please download the form located below and return the completed form to the school nurse’s office and I will FAX the form over to your doctor’s office to be signed.

Medication must be in it’s original labeled container. You can ask the pharmacist for a second container with label to send to school. Any changes in medication will require a new written order from the doctor.

Asthma, Allergies, Seizures, or Diabetes

Medical conditions such as asthma, allergies, seizures, or diabetes can sometimes require emergency medical attention. In order to provide the safest environment for your child we need to have an emergency action plan in place for children who have any of these medical conditions.

Please fill out the emergency forms that pertain to your child and return them to school with your child. We need an updated form filled out yearly and when any changes occur.

Additionally it may be helpful if I can speak with your child’s doctor directly to understand more about your child’s individual needs while at school. Please fill out the medical exchange of information form located below and return it to school.

Dental Care

The Michigan Dental Outreach program, a mobile dentist, will be visiting our school twice a year. They offer cleanings, screenings, and fluoride treatments to our students during the school day. Forms will go home in the fall and again in the spring each year. Medicaid and MIchild cover 100% of these treatments. They also directly bill private insurance companies for their services. Assistance may be available for families without insurance and unable to pay for the services. For more information call the Michigan Dental Outreach program direct at 888.833.8441.