Greetings nurse colleagues,
What a whirlwind this school year has been so far for all of us as we work to keep our school populations informed and healthy in the midst of a global pandemic with frequently changing metrics and guidance. Your OSNA leadership has been hard at work creating opportunities for our school nurses across Oregon to connect for support and education, to collaborate on evolving protocols and tools, to commiserate around struggles, and to celebrate triumphs. The OSNA board has been so busy that I want to take a moment to check in with you all to give a few updates on the many happenings behind the scenes.
The legislative committee has been engaged this year under the wonderful guidance of Wendy Niskanen, our immediate past president, and our new Legislative Committee chair, Denise Cardinali. We can’t thank Denise enough for the time and effort she has put in this year to help OSNA put a bill in front of the Senate Committee on Education, in an effort to mandate a School Nurse Specialist position at the Oregon Department of Education. That bill, SB 356, will receive a public hearing this Wednesday, April 7th, around 3:15pm. The Legislative Committee has sent out emails asking for member support in writing a note of support for the bill, with links to find your legislator’s contact info, and template examples for you to make it easier to shoot them a quick email. We are so thankful to have several school nurse leaders who will be testifying on behalf of the bill on Wednesday, but your voice is important as well, so please send an email of support if you haven’t already. Written testimony can be submitted up to 24 hours after the hearing (by 3:00 on 4/8/2021)
Among those school nurse leaders who will be testifying on behalf of OSNA this Wednesday is OSNA’s currently appointed President Elect, Dr. Jan Olson, DNP, MSNEd, BSN, RN, NCSN. The board of the Oregon School Nurses Association is so pleased that Dr. Olson has accepted my nomination and appointment of her to this position to finish out the term vacated by our previous President Elect, Brianna McFarlin, who unfortunately had to step down to pursue another career path. We are so thankful to Brianna for the time she spent with the board, and she will be missed. Dr. Jan Olson has agreed to fill the position for the remainder of Brianna’s term, and the OSNA board voted to approve the temporary assignment until the OSNA membership can vote to confirm Dr. Olson's appointment.
A final note... don’t forget about the upcoming OSNA Spring Conference on Friday April 16th! Please register if you haven’t already.
We are looking forward to engaging with you all!
Sincerely, Heather Godsey, BSN, RN - President of OSNA