District looking to hire seven health assistants ahead of new school year

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FLEMING ISLAND – The school board is looking to hire seven health assistants ahead of the upcoming school year.

As the new year quickly approaches with teachers reporting on Aug. 11 and students returning to class on Aug. 25, the district is still getting all of its plans prepared to keep children and staff safe when classrooms open up again. Nurses are obviously important at every school, but they are perhaps more important to a school’s safety now than in recent years due to the coronavirus.

“We currently have five nursing positions open,” Superintendent David Broskie said. “We have seen nurses that say they don’t want to come back to school and so we need a plan to adjust for that.”

That plan is to hire seven health assistants, Broskie said during a July 28 school board agenda review meeting. These assistants wouldn’t have to be registered nurses, but they would have to be certified health professionals – meaning they’re able to perform first aid, CPR and distribute medicine, among other things. Broskie also said they won’t need a nursing license. These health assistants will call the district office in Green Cove Springs their home base and will be sent to schools as needed.

Maxim has a contract with the school district to provide nurses. Broskie said Maxim, like others, are struggling to keep numbers up. Broskie said the district will be using Maxim contracted nurses, sub-clinicians, which are like substitute nurses, and health assistants to keep schools stocked with health professionals.

“We’re trying to piece together a bunch of different things…to make sure our health is under control in schools,” Broskie said.

In other business, the school board will discuss a resolution to condemn racism at their upcoming meeting on Aug. 6. The resolution is titled, ‘Resolution Condemning Racism and Affirming the Commitment of the School Board of Clay County, Florida, to an Inclusive School Environment For All.”

It states that racism and hate have no place in Clay County schools or society, and the constitutional rights of every person who lives, works and learns in the community must be protected. It continues that injustice based on race, gender, political affiliation and a number of other things must be stopped and that students should not have to confront bias, harassment, prejudice, hatred or discrimination of any kind while in school or in the community.

“Therefore, be it resolved, that we, members of The School Board of Clay County, Florida, stand steadfast in our commitment to foster an inclusive educational environment where every student, teacher, support professional, parent, and community member is treated with dignity and respect, as well as our commitment to continue fighting for justice and human and civil rights for all.”

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