Texas School Nurses Organization

February 2021

Mission Statement & Vision Statement

To enhance whole student wellness in support of health and learning by advancing school nursing practice.

Student access to health and learning. All day. Every day.

This newsletter takes NASN’s Framework for 21st Century School Nursing Practice approach.


President's Message

February already! I seem to say that at the beginning of every month! I have to be honest to say the days and weeks seem to be lasting longer with all the changes COVID has made in our lives and world. And February brings mixed thoughts in my oversaturated brain some of which include (in no particular order);

  • Moderna dose number 2 this week!
  • Vaccine availability or no vaccine availability depending on your community
  • President’s Day and a holiday from school
  • Flocks of robins circling this weekend, a sure sign of spring
  • Black History Month
  • Peach tree in full bloom
  • St. Valentine’s Day
  • Contact tracing, quarantine, isolation, 7 days, 10 days, 14 days, rapid tests, PCR tests, all new vocabulary that can disappear at any time!
  • Warmer days ahead, and the sound of children playing outside
  • Winter break for some, spring break around the corner for others
  • 100th day of school nearby (if you started in August)
  • Time to sow seeds in the garden
  • May can’t be far away can it?
  • Hummingbirds, already at the feeders?

All those mixed up thoughts bring to mind the continued need for care not only for your students and staff but also for you and your families! Taking care of others can only happen effectively if you take care of yourself! Almost a year ago when we began talking of school closures I gathered these thoughts for our staff who were teaching virtually from home. They continue to be important reminders for us all.

Are you taking care of you?


Big picture

February is American Heart Month

When we take care of #OurHearts as part of our self-care, we set an example for those around us to do the same.
#OurHearts Outreach Toolkit

Here you will find information about heart disease, the importance of social support for reaching heart health goals, educational materials to use in your community, social media resources, and more.

Big picture

Questions About Screening Certification? Response from DSHS...

DSHS is still not offering any in person training until further notice. Currently, the State has also decided to hold off on offering recertification course online for those expiring this year (2021). The State does not count the month; thus, people’s v/h certification with a valid through date of 2021 will have this whole year to attend a recertification course as soon as they offer one.


Big picture
TCH Diabetes Registration deadline 2/5 at 5 pm

CLICK HERE! TCH 2021 Virtual Diabetes Management Conference for School Nurses 2/6/21 8 am - 6 pm. Full-day virtual conference designed to meet the educational needs of school nurses in managing students with diabetes in the school setting.


Notes from Your NASN Director!

Hello, TSNO Members! I hope you and your loved ones are well and safe. I know these are very busy times for you, so I will keep this brief, but know that I am always here for you. I have a few items to share from NASN, but please make it a habit to check the Week Digest or the NASN Quarterly Connection often to keep you up-to-date informed:

  • NASN has partnered with the non-profit organization, GETUsPPE. This organization has PPE resources for schools, focused on Title I schools with vulnerable populations. They can provide basic PPE such as masks, gowns, gloves as well as assisting with partnerships for makers in communities to create safe workspaces in schools. Please complete this request form if you need PPE. You can also donate here to support this cause if you wish. Below is a pdf report from GETUsPPE shortage index dated November 2020 that highlights PPE shortages in schools. For more information on PPE for Schools.
  • The 2021 NASN Election will officially open on March 15th. The link provided gives you a list of the candidates, instructions for casting your ballot, and more.
  • NASN launched a new data collection platform for National School Health Data Set: Every Student Counts! (ESC). This new platform was developed in conjunction with NASN’s CDC Contract for a School Nurse-led Active Surveillance Process.
  • NASN provides specific guidance and resources regarding data collection during the COVID pandemic.

If you are having any future virtual regional meetings, please reach out to me, I would love to spend time with you in sharing more information on these topics and more. My contact information is francisluna.tsno@gmail.com.

In your service,


Francis Luna, MSN, RN, NCSN

NASN-Texas Director


NASN Quarterly Connection

NASN's quarterly newsletter helps keep you more informed about member benefits, updates and resources that are at your disposal.


February 8th is Nurse Day at the Capitol- See more information below!

"Advocacy is the deliberate process of influencing those who make decisions." - NASN

Things are slowly starting to happen at the capitol... both chambers reconvened this past week on Jan. 26 are adjourned again until Feb. 9. An advocacy group for medically fragile children was the extension's featured group presentation all week, and their display included medical equipment that our nurses use when these kids are in our care at school.

Senate Committee members and meeting times have been posted. Nothing showing on Texas Legislature Online for House committees, but I'll keep an eye out.

Please join Texas Nurses Association for this year's virtual Nurse Day at the Capitol on Monday, Feb. 8. Registration is open until Feb. 5 - sign up just below on blue button.

Also, attaching the weekly bill tracker from 01/17/2021. These are 5 new bills we'll be watching.

If you have any questions about how to get involved, contact TSNO's Advocacy Chair, Becca Harkleroad, Region 13 bechark.tsno@gmail.com

2021 Nurse Day at the Capitol Feb. 8th Register by 2/5!

Online registration is available until: 2/5/2021 Click this button to REGISTER


TSNO Bill Tracking Report!

School Health Issues Committee would like to hear from you!

Please send us what information you need to know about that pertains to School Health. We will focus on YOUR ideas and requests.

Please email:

Amber Cichocki RN: acichockitsno@gmail.com

Michelle Butler RN: mbutler@essc12.net

Ada Salazar RN: acsalazar3b@gmail.com

Amy Martinez RN: alyons@neisd.net

Jennifer Christian RN: jchristian@atlisd.net

Big picture
TEA School Health Survey- Has your district done this?

Make sure your district data is counted! The annual School Health Survey is available for school district and open-enrollment charter school completion through May 28, 2021.

Big picture

Texas School Health Mini-Grant Application Application Deadline: Monday, February 8, 2021 (Application pdf below)

Apply for a Healthy Choices Grant

The goal of the Oliver Foundation is to encourage children, families and communities in Texas to improve the eating and physical activity patterns of Pre-school, Elementary, Middle School and High School students.


Looking for #COVID19 Testing, Therapeutics, or Vaccine Providers in Texas???

The Texas Division of Emergency Management has maps for that!


Understanding Health Literacy

People need information they can understand and use to make the best decisions for their health. Limited health literacy and limited literacy are not the same but they are related. For more on what you can do, check out CDC's Understanding Health Literacy
Big picture
CDC Clear Communication Index

The CDC Clear Communication Index is a research-based tool to plan and assess public communication materials. At the end, the material will get a final score and explanation.

Big picture


Summer Camps Are Already Looking For a Few Good Nurses!

Adventure and exciting experiences await you! Share your gifts and change the lives of others. This will be the summer you always remember!


The Value of Membership

Care for Your Students and You

VSP Vision Care's Sight for Students program is open to NASN members. Through this partnership, NASN members receive gift certificates they can share with qualifying students 19 years of age or younger.

The best professional liability rates available are extended to NASN members through NASN's partnership with Lockton Affinity.

The UnaRxCard is a discount prescription drug card that can lower the cost of many prescription medications and things like diabetes supplies, hearing aides and glasses. The card is available to NASN members and can be shared with others including students and their families.


Did you know...

The TSNO website has a "Resource" link with so much valuable information in just one click of the mouse! Examples include advocacy tools, AED's, asthma resources, confidentiality, diabetes care manual, federal agency links, food allergies, models, IHP Templates (my personal favorite), position statements, Scope and Standards, and so much more! Check it out at this link:



TSNO Executive Committee


PRESIDENT Karen Schwind - Region 13


PRESIDENT-ELECT Laurie Smith - Region 8


TREASURER Luisa Herrera- Region 19


SECRETARY Lisa Formby - Region 16


NASN DIRECTOR Francis Luna - Region X


NOMINATIONS COORDINATOR Deana Bunting - Region 5 deanabunting.tsno@gmail.com




ADVOCACY CHAIR Becca Harkleroad- Region 13


SCHOOL HEALTH ISSUES Amber Cichocki- Region X


MEMBER SERVICES Brandy Bowlen - Region IV brandybowlen.tsno@gmail.com


Membership Coordinator Ronnie Howard - Region IV ronniehoward.tsno@gmail.com

REGION PRESIDENTS Coordinator Denise Kablaitis - Region 13



EXHIBIT LIAISON Elizabeth Goedde - Region IV ElizabethGoedde.tsno@gmail.com



Are you IN?

Connect with with TSNO on LinkedIn and grow your professional network!