How We Handle Student Emergencies

Henrico Schools strives to be proactive in anticipating school health-care needs that may arise. The HCPS Department of School Health Services believes that students thrive in a collaborative, holistic environment; we communicate regularly with instructors about their students’ needs. Our approach to student health care is all-inclusive. If students, teachers, staff members or families think someone in the school community needs medical care, we want to know.

  • Each of HCPS’ middle and high schools has a registered nurse staffing its clinic. There is also an itinerate registered nurse who moves among the schools.

  • At the elementary level, each school clinic has a clinic attendant, a registered nurse or a licensed practical nurse. Seven itinerate registered nurses also move among elementary schools for backup and support. Since the 2016-17 school year, all elementary school clinics have been staffed by licensed nurses.

  • Each school also has clinic backups to fill in if necessary. The backups are trained in such areas as administering medications, inhalers and nebulizers; helping with diabetic care; and using EpiPens.

  • In addition to a clinic employee, each school has at least two staff members per floor certified in providing CPR and using an automated external defibrillator.

  • Every HCPS teacher receives basic CPR training and has the option to receive more instruction and become certified.

  • Each staff member has the authority to call 911 if necessary.

  • Our staff members don’t use email to communicate about student medical needs or emergencies. Instead, health staff members use phones and hand-held radios to communicate directly with parents, guardians or authorities.

  • At the start of the school year we ask parents or guardians to give us an updated health history of their student. Nurses review these and collaborate with families and health-care providers to ensure accurate care. We give teachers lists of their students with particular medical needs, and put medical alerts into our PowerSchool software where teachers can see them easily.

  • Students who need additional support get specific emergency medical plans; 504 disability plans; or individualized education programs.