School nurse

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School nurses work with schools and families to improve the health and wellbeing of children and young people.

Salary range: £23,250 to £38,000

How to become a school nurse

You can get into this job through:

  • working towards this role


You can apply to become a school nurse if you’re a registered nurse or midwife. Any branch of nursing is acceptable.

You’ll usually complete a course in Specialist Community Public Health Nursing – School Nursing, approved by the Nursing & Midwifery Council.

Courses can last between 1 and 2 years.

More information


Career tips

You may have an advantage when looking for work or training if you’ve got experience in health promotion or working with children in the community.

Knowledge of child protection and an understanding of family planning issues and the health needs of school children would also be useful.

Further information

You’ll find more details about becoming a school nurse from Health Careers.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • knowledge of psychology
  • customer service skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • the ability to work well with others
  • knowledge of medicine and dentistry
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and requirements

You’ll need to:

You are likely to need a driving licence for this job.

What you’ll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • raising awareness of health issues like smoking and drug abuse
  • promoting healthy living, including safe-sex education
  • giving immunisations and vaccinations
  • carrying out developmental screening
  • training teachers on healthcare issues
  • advising on school health policy
  • supporting children with medical needs like asthma, diabetes, epilepsy or mental health issues

Working environment

You could work at a school, at a pupil referral unit, in the community or at a college.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could become a team manager or a community matron.

You could also become a manager of a service or work in education or research.

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