Article April 8, 2015
School health services for children with special health care needs in californiaSRI Authors Kathleen M. Hebbeler
Baker, D. L., Hebbeler, K., Davis-Alldritt, L., Anderson, L. S., & Knauer, H. (2015). School health services for children with special health care needs in california. Journal of school nursing, 31(5), 318–325
Children with special health care needs (CSHCN) are at risk for school failure when their health needs are not met. Current studies have identified a strong connection between school success and health. This study attempted to determine (a) how schools meet the direct service health needs of children and (b) who provides those services. The study used the following two methods: (a) analysis of administrative data from the California Basic Educational Data System and (b) a cross-sectional online survey of 446 practicing California school nurses. Only 43% of California’s school districts employ school nurses. Unlicensed school personnel with a variety of unregulated training provide school health services. There is a lack of identification of CSHCN, and communication barriers impair the ability to deliver care. Study results indicate that California invests minimally in school health services.