Obtain certification for a position as a school nurse by obtaining a bachelor’s degree in nursing or a health-related field, gaining work experience and then taking the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses. Certified nurses must also renew their certifications occasionally through continuing education.
Nursing certification candidates must first obtain either an associate’s degree in nursing or a bachelor’s degree in nursing or a related field. A Bachelor of Science in Nursing is the most applicable degree, with courses in the sciences, psychology, health assessment, nutrition and other relevant fields. Other majors related to the health field, including chemistry, biochemistry, counseling, health education and nutrition, are also acceptable for nursing certification.
In addition to a degree, applicants must have actual clinical experience to sit for the exam. The National Council of State Boards of Nursing requires applicants to have at least 1,000 hours of clinical experience in school nursing over the past three years, though the board itself recommends 4,000 hours. After acquiring enough hours, applicants can sit for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses. The exam covers a wide range of nursing topics and also assesses general competence.
All certified nurses, including school nurses, must take continuing education courses to stay up to date on developments in health care practices and technology. The NBCSN requires proof of 75 continuing education credits every five years.