Notes from CSD Nurses

  • About Nurse Notes

    Although it is essential to practice safe distancing, handwashing, and covering your cough, it is also important to stay calm. The nurses of CSD want to encourage our families to try to find some ways to reduce stress and anxiety during this time. I know we've heard it time after time to TRY NOT TO STRESS, but did you know that stress
    can weaken your immune system, leaving you more vulnerable to viral infections and frequent illnesses. Below you will find some great suggestions for you and your family while at home.  

    Shonda Moore, MBA, BSN, RN
    CSD District Lead Nurse

  • Nurse Notes from January 7, 2021

    The CSD School Health team is excited to welcome your student back for in-person learning. We would like to share some important information regarding school health forms necessary for attendance. Please make sure that you have completed the Annual Data Update through Infinite Campus, including the health information section.  

    • If your child has a medical condition that may require care during school hours, including asthma, diabetes, or seizures, please provide your school nurse with an updated Care Plan from your child's healthcare provider. Each care plan must be updated annually to provide the most appropriate care for your child's condition. 
    • If your child will require medication at school, a CSD Authorization of Medication form must be completed for each medication.  Please note that this form has been revised and does require a healthcare provider signature for all prescription medication.  Medications must be in the original labeled container (over the counter and prescription). Pharmacists can provide a duplicate labeled container with only the school doses, if needed.
    • If this is your child’s first year enrolled in a Georgia public school, a Georgia Department of Health 3300 Certificate of Vision, Hearing, Dental, and Nutrition Screening form is required for school admittance.

    Student immunizations must be current and recorded on a GA 3231 immunization form. Out-of-state or international immunization forms cannot be accepted. If there is a religious objection to immunization, a notarized GA 2208 form is required.  

    Please feel free to reach out to your school nurse with any questions you may have. Thank you so much for your attention to these health requirements. Additional forms may be found at CSD Medical Forms.


    Nurse Notes from May 21, 2020: 

    As the school year is coming to a close, I would like to say thank you to all of the CSD children and parents for being so courageous during these ever changing times. Despite all of the “New Norms”, I hope you all have an amazing summer filled with Fun, Love, and Laughter. By now you’ve already read about all of the safe practices, including social distancing that are necessary to help keep everyone safe. So let’s see how we can start to have some fun again.

    Here are just a few fun summer activities you can enjoy together (social distancing, ofcourse)

    • Hold a block dinner party- Bring a table out, and enjoy dinner with your neighbors, together but apart.
    • Have a campfire in the backyard- Share family stories around the firepit and make s’mores or toasted marshmallows.
    • Camp in the backyard- Set up a tent and stay outdoors overnight. You can stargaze and compete to see who finds Orion first.
    • Have a backyard “drive -in”-  Find a sheet, get a projector and let the movie light up the night after the sun goes down.
    • Play board, card games- Turn off the PS4, iPads, and electronics and dig out one of your board games. This is an opportunity to have some family funtime!
    • Go for a family walk outside- (Wear a mask) Fresh air and exercise is good for the whole family. Mentally and physically.
    • Cook together- This promotes togetherness and teamwork. At the end of it, you have a delicious meal to enjoy together. 


    Happy Summer!

    Nurse Lola, RN, BSN, College Heights, ECLC



    Nurse Notes from May 18: 

    A Note from Nurse Nancy Garrison, Westchester Elementary

    Schools Almost Out for the Summer!  The last official school day is Friday, May 22nd and then summer vacation! While our summer vacations may look different then previous years, it is still important to remember summer safety.  We all need to continue safe distancing, handwashing and covering our coughs, but with summer, comes additional safety measures.  Daily routines should include:

    • Sun safety: Apply and reapply sunscreen, wear UV protection clothing, wear a hat.
    • Limit sun exposure between the hours of 10 am and 2 pm.
    • Drink plenty of water, even when you don’t feel thirsty.
    • Avoid bug bites, apply insect repellent.
    • Helmet safety: Make sure you wear a properly fitted helmet every time you ride.
    • Avoid contact with poisonous plants, educate children on plant safety
    • Closely supervise children near bodies of water
    • Reinforce and monitor road safety, especially now that traffic is increasing.

    A comprehensive list from the CDC regarding Summer Safety can be found here:

    Have a safe, healthy  and happy summer vacation!


    Nurse Notes from May 15:

    A note from Nurse Marla Dubyak, RN, BSN, F.AVE Upper Elementary 


    As our community continues to fight the battle against COVID-19, be reminded that you are not alone in doing this. While we are all physically apart, we are together, striving for one common goal.  Social distancing and increased stress and anxiety can push us to our limits. Please remember to be kind to yourself and those around you. 
    Some activities you can try to help break up the monotony and decrease anxiety include:
    -explore somewhere new, be it by bike, in the car, or on foot.
    -change up your routine.
    -challenge your mind and try to learn something each day. 
    -FaceTime or call an old friend or someone you have lost touch with.
    -reconnect by snail mail.
    -start some new family traditions ie: game night, family movie night, camping in the backyard, etc. 
    -exercise and get moving! 

    As the community starts to reopen, please be reminded that the risks to yourself and your families are still significant. Do your part and wear a mask to protect yourself and those around you. Stay safe and stay kind!


    Nurse Notes from May 13:

    A note from Nurse Jen Eagle, BSN, RN, Winnona Park Elementary 


    I wanted to share with you ways you can and how I am staying well.  Wellness has 3 parts- physical, mental, and emotional/social.  

    *exercise. play outside. ride a bike. learn to ride a bike. hike. walk. plant something. throw a frisbee. (something i have been getting better at.)

    *get enough sleep. sleep re energizes your brain.  9-13 hours for kids aged 5-12.  

    *wash your hands often. don't bite your nails.  

    *read books. read books aloud with your families.  do puzzles. (i just started a really hard one.)

    *eat well. fruits and veggies as well as proteins.  

    *stay hydrated. drink lots of water.  try drinking 8 cups a day.  you can do it!

    *limit your screen time. (not including school purposes.)

    *laugh. be silly. listen to music. take naps . face time with friends and families. have dance parties. be a kid!


    Nurse Notes from May 11: 

    Stay Focused

    As our state begins to relax some of the lockdown ordinances, make certain you are still focusing on keeping you and those around you safe and healthy. The COVID-19 virus is still spreading and it's very unpredictable. Follow the guidance provided by our health partners to help to prevent spreading of the virus. Continue to practice safe distancing by avoiding crowded places. Practice good hand and respiratory hygiene (cover your cough, sneeze, etc.). Don’t touch your face. When wearing a mask, make certain it covers both your nose and mouth and make sure there are no gaps between the mask and your face. These are some simple ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other infections. Stay focused on good health practices.


    Shonda Moore, MBA, BSN, RN

    District Lead Nurse

    While You Have Their Attention

    By Chanell Huff-Cox, BSN,RN,CLNC-Clairemont Elementary School

    Parents are doing their very best to accept and adjust to the impact of novel coronavirus on daily routines, family life, and work schedules. While canceling appointments, preparing for virtual classroom learning, and attending Zoom meetings, it would be neglectful to ignore the effect COVID-19 is having on teenagers. Think about it; school ended for students on Thursday, March 12th, at the normal dismissal time with robocalls and emails to parents by 5 pm announcing school closure until further notice. Perhaps, the first couple of days of no school were filled with pure joy. However, now that the 2019-20 school year has officially ended, reality has set in. There will be no junior/senior prom, senior trip, no in-person graduation, no championship tournaments, or college declaration day; at least not in the way we  have traditionally known. Shopping malls, bowling alleys, movie theaters, and restaurants are closed temporarily due to social distancing recommendations. Reflecting on how exciting these milestone events were for parents should make it easier to empathize with teens who are experiencing disappointment, frustration, and sadness.

    Sheltering in place with teenagers in an attempt to adhere to the CDC guidelines to stop the spread of the coronavirus can be challenging; however, while you have their attention choose this time to reconnect and empower your teen. Below are a few suggestions.

    Get Busy Cooking
    Who can resist a warm batch of chocolate chip cookies? Almost no one! Cooking and baking with your teenager encourages team building and can grow the connection between you and your teen , especially in such tight quarters. Time in quarantine is the ideal time to let your teen experiment with ingredients in the pantry and refrigerator to create new recipes and reimagine old ones. The whole family can work in the kitchen together and eat at the table now that no one has any competing schedules.


    Stay Active
    While under a stay-at-home order, it is easy for our teens to sleep, watch TV, and peruse on their phones all day and all night. This may be our go-to choice of a distraction but we should  stress the importance of staying healthy and keeping our hearts pumping. Shooting hoops, skateboarding, juggling a soccer ball, and merely going on a run in the neighborhood as a family are all ways to help teens stay healthy. Besides physical bonuses, exercise also releases endorphins that make us happier and can provide clarity to our mental health. 


    Learn Something New
    Now is the perfect time to learn or try a new skill - ideas may include: painting, baking, starting a business, sewing, or photography. With many hours to accomplish new skills, teens can pursue a hobby that has always interested them. The internet offers a variety of online learning classes. These activities may also keep them busy during your Zoom meeting calls.


    Ask the Experts
    Allow your teen to educate you on any software on your electronic devices. Many teens are tech-savvy and can offer help or ways to enhance your presentations or simplify tasks that may be difficult in your adult mind. You can ask them for help by saying, "Hey, I am struggling to start this Zoom conference meeting, do you mind helping me?". By asking something so small of your teen, they may go back to their room feeling wanted and fulfilled that they helped you.

    During this unprecedented time, it is easy to think about the unfavorable effects of the coronavirus. However, while you have their attention, think about how you can positively impact your teen. Welcome their input, acknowledge their disappointment, encourage their creativity, and build their independence. Utilizing this unexpected time together can enhance and foster a long-lasting relationship with your teen.


    Nurse Notes from May 1: 

    From Tammara Sinkfield, Renfroe Middle School Nurse

    Keeping The Home Safe

    Encourage your family members to:

    • Clean hands at the door and at regular intervals
    • Create habits and reminders to avoid touching their face and cover coughs and sneezes
    • Disinfect surfaces like doorknobs, tables, and handrails regularly
    • Increase ventilation by opening windows or adjusting air conditioning

    For households with vulnerable seniors or those with significant underlying conditions

    (significant underlying conditions include heart, lung, kidney disease, diabetes and conditions that suppress the immune system)

    • Have the healthy people in the household conduct themselves as if they were a significant risk to the person with underlying conditions. For example, wash hands frequently before interacting with the person, such as feeding or caring for the person
    • If possible, provide a protected space for the vulnerable household members
    • Ensure all utensils and surfaces are cleaned regularly

    For households with sick family members:

    • Give sick members their own room if possible, and keep the door closed
    • Have only one family member care for them

    -Tammara Sinkfield, Renfroe Middle School Nurse



    Nurse Notes from April 24: 

    This is a very strange time for all of us. We are doing things that some of us have never done before (distance learning, social distancing, etc.). Use this time to try the things that you may not have had time to do before. Start a new project. Do a daily exercise routine. Learn a new recipe. You are braver, smarter, and stronger than you think you are.  Remember that tough times never last but TOUGH PEOPLE do.  WE CAN DO THIS!. 

    School nurses are critical to the health and well-being of students! National School Nurse Day May 6 and we are here for you.

    Shonda Moore, MBA, BSN, RN
    CSD District Lead Nurse


    From Nurse Barbara Hill-Coatney, R.N., School Nurse, Glennwood Elementary

    Being fit is a way of saying you eat well, get a lot of exercise, sleep well, and have a healthy weight. If you are fit, you feel good, your body works well, and you can do the things you want to do.

    1.  Eat a variety of foods, not just your favorite, include some fruits and veggies, try something new
    2.  Drink lots of water and include some milk, try to avoid the soda!
    3. Get some sleep:  3-6 years old 10 hours a day, 7-12 years old 10 hours a day, 12-18 years old 8-9 hours a day
    4. Limit screen time, try to spend no more than 2 hours per day, not counting use for school and educational needs
    5. Be active!! Go for a walk. Play in the yard. Dance in your room. HAVE SOME FUN!!

    -Nurse Barbara Hill-Coatney, R.N.


    Shout out to our amazing nurses!

    CSD nurses are volunteering at a local  COVID-19 testing drive this wknd to support underserved community members in the Old Fourth Ward neighborhood. The My Brother’s Keeper Initiative will provide testing this Friday 4/24-Sunday 4/26 at Blueprint Church. CSD nurses will assist with triage and data collection of patients prior to testing.   We are excited to support the community and do our part to help.
    Thank you to the following nurses for volunteering to help our community!
    Nancy Garrison
    Chanel Huff-Cox
    Jen Eagle
    Beth Barrington
    Dawn Durham
    Lola Poindexter

    Nurse Notes from April 17:

    During times of uncertainty and stress, it is crucial to practice good sleep hygiene to help to keep you healthy. It can be very difficult to keep your sleep schedule while working and learning from home. Try to go to bed around the same time at night and get at least 7-9 hours of sleep. It's okay to sleep in a little bit later, but don't over do it. Sleep, along with exercise and eating properly can all help to keep you healthy. Make these a regular part of your day.

    Remember, School nurses are critical to the health and well-being of students! National School Nurse Day May 6. #SND2020 @schoolnurses

    -Shonda Moore MBA, BSN, RN 
    District Lead Nurse

    From Holly E. Fletcher, RN, BSN, School Nurse, Decatur High School

    We all need to remember to take care of our WHOLE self!

    Stay focussed on school assignments. Use this time at home to become comfortable with subjects you may struggle with. Reach out for help from teachers and friends who have a greater understanding of the subject matter. Form study groups and participate in online tutorials. Challenge yourself to learn something new! If you finish assignments early, think of creative ways to expand your knowledge - -try science experiments, explore, draw, paint, cre

    Don't stay glued to a screen! Remember to do something physical each day. Start your day with stretching or go for a walk. If you participate in a sport, do drills to perfect your technique. Dance! Take a break from studying and listen to uplifting music. Start a daily routine that increases your heart rate and releases endorphins. Physical activity will help relieve stress, lift your mood, and keep your body in shape!

    Focus on nutrition - eat balanced meals, stay away from unhealthy choices. Increase your water intake. Healthy bodies and minds work best when hydrated!

    Be mindful of social media -use this avenue to spread encouragement and kindness. Create fun videos and messages to help friends who struggle with anxiety or depression. Stay in contact with people who make you happy, boost your mood and care for your well-being. Find something that can feed your soul with positivity. 

    Nurse Notes from April 15:

    From Dawn Durham, RN at Oakhurst

    As we adjust to new routines with our children at home, the American Academy of Pediatrics has provided some tips in hopes of helping with this transition. In addition, they have included some helpful suggestions in explaining COVID-19 to your child:

    While at home due to the outbreak, try to keep their days as routine and scheduled as possible. Here are a few tips that can help:

    • Read books with your child. It's not only fun but reading together strengthens your bond with your child AND helps their development.
    • Make time for active play. Bring out the blocks, balls, jump ropes and buckets and let the creativity go. Play games that kids of all ages can play, like tag. Let your kids make up new games. Encourage older kids to make up a workout or dance to keep them moving.

    • Keep an eye on media time. Whenever possible, play video games or go online with your child to keep that time structured and limited. If kids are missing their school friends or other family, try video chats to stay in touch.

    There's a lot of news coverage about the outbreak of COVID-19 and it can be overwhelming for parents and frightening to kids. The American Academy of Pediatrics encourages parents and others who work closely with children to filter information and talk about it in a way that their child can understand. These tips can help:

    • Simple reassurance. Remind children that researchers and doctors are learning as much as they can, as quickly as they can, about the virus and are taking steps to keep everyone safe.
    • Give them control. It's also a great time to remind your children of what they can do to help – washing their hands often, coughing into a tissue or their sleeves, and getting enough sleep.
    • Watch for signs of anxiety. Children may not have the words to express their worry, but you may see signs of it. They may get cranky, be more clingy, have trouble sleeping, or seem distracted. Keep the reassurance going and try to stick to your normal routines.
    • Monitor their media. Keep young children away from frightening images they may see on TV, social media, computers, etc. For older children, talk together about what they hear on the news and correct any misinformation or rumors you may hear.
    • Be a good role model. COVID-19 doesn't discriminate, and neither should we. While COVID-19 started in Wuhan, China, it doesn't mean that having Asian ancestry – or any other ancestry – makes someone more susceptible to the virus or more contagious. Stigma and discrimination hurt everyone by creating fear or anger toward others.