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AB-285 State Department of Education: state school nurse consultant. (2021-2022)

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Date Published: 02/11/2021 09:00 PM
AB285:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  February 11, 2021

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2021–2022 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 285


Introduced by Assembly Member Holden

January 21, 2021


An act to add Article 14 (commencing with Section 33485) to Chapter 3 of Part 20 of Division 2 of Title 2 of the Education Code, relating to pupil health, and declaring the urgency thereof, to take effect immediately.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 285, as amended, Holden. State Department of Education: state school nurse consultant.
Existing law establishes in the state government a State Department of Education and the department is responsible for various ongoing activities involving the public schools. Existing law requires the Commission on Teacher Credentialing to, among other duties, establish standards for the issuance and renewal of credentials, certificates, and permits. Existing law sets forth the minimum requirements for a services credential with a specialization in health for a school nurse, as provided. Existing law requires the governing board of a school district to give diligent care to the health and physical development of pupils, and authorizes the governing board of a school district to employ properly certified persons for that work. Existing law authorizes a school nurse, subject to approval by the governing board of the school district, to perform various pupil health care services.
This bill would require the department to appoint a state school nurse consultant to be housed within the department. The bill would require the state school nurse consultant to be a registered school nurse with a minimum of 5 years of management experience. credentialed by the commission, as specified, who has a minimum of 5 years of experience in school health program management. The bill would require the state school nurse consultant to work with school districts and school nurses to promote quality school nursing services and school health programs that address the broad health needs of pupils, among other responsibilities. The bill would require the state school nurse consultant to annually report to the Governor and the Legislature a summary of the year’s activities and specific recommendations, as provided.
This bill would declare that it is to take effect immediately as an urgency statute.
Vote: 2/3   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 (a) The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(1) California faces an unprecedented time. The state has stubbornly high poverty rates, income inequality, and high housing costs, which highlight the injustices and inequality affecting the various communities of color throughout California.
(2) The state is also facing gaps in access to primary care and preventive services, and likely worsening the crisis around mental and emotional health.
(3) Schools have played a significant role in assuring pupil health care needs are met. However, over 47 percent of the state’s schools are without access to credentialed school nurses.
(4) To assure safe reopening of schools after the COVID-19 pandemic, and guidance and technical assistance to local educational agencies on physical, emotional, and mental health issues, the State Department of Education should have a state school nurse consultant.
(5) A comprehensive and collaborative system of school health can and should be developed to include programs that highlight the provision of safe and trauma-informed environments.
(b) It is the intent of the Legislature that the creation of a state school nurse consultant in the State Department of Education will result in all of the following:
(1) Technical assistance to school districts as they reopen after the COVID-19 pandemic to address a myriad of physical and mental health issues.
(2) Guidance on COVID-19 issues such as infection control, disease surveillance, and assistance in providing personal protective equipment.
(3) Addressing issues relating to pupils with disabilities at the local level.
(4) Guidance on required mandated health screenings and immunizations.
(5) Facilitating the development of mental health policies, standards, and guidelines and advising local educational agencies on mental health best practices.
(6) Providing technical assistance and anticipatory guidance on the two Medi-Cal-based programs, the Local Educational Agency Medi-Cal Billing Option Program and the School-Based Medi-Cal Administrative Activities Program, by doing both of the following:
(A) Assisting schools enrolling as Medi-Cal providers.
(B) Providing technical assistance and interaction with the State Department of Health Care Services and other divisions on the local educational agency and Medi-Cal administrative activities reimbursement issues that fund health and mental health services provided at the schoolsite.

SEC. 2.

 Article 14 (commencing with Section 33485) is added to Chapter 3 of Part 20 of Division 2 of Title 2 of the Education Code, to read:
Article  14. State School Nurse Consultant

33485.
 The department shall appoint a state school nurse consultant to be housed within the department. The state school nurse consultant shall be a registered school nurse with a minimum of five years of management experience. services credential with a specialization in health for a school nurse issued by the Commission on Teacher Credentialing, who has a minimum of five years of experience in school health program management. The state school nurse consultant shall work with school districts and school nurses to promote quality school nursing services and school health programs that address the broad health needs of pupils. The state school nurse consultant, in performing the duties of the position, shall collaborate with the State Department of Public Health, the State Department of Health Care Services, the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, and the Board of Registered Nursing.

33486.
 The state school nurse consultant shall be responsible for all of the following:
(a) Serving as a liaison and resource expert in school nursing and school health program areas for local, regional, state, and national school health care providers and policy setting groups.
(b) Providing consultation and technical assistance to school districts, parents, and community members.
(c) Coordinating school health program activities with public health, social services, environmental, and educational agencies, and other public and private entities.
(d) Monitoring, interpreting, synthesizing, and disseminating relevant information associated with changes in health, nursing, and medical care, school nursing practice, legislation, and legal issues that impact schools and the pupils they serve.
(e) Facilitating the development of policies, standards, and guidelines, interpreting updates, and disseminating policies, standards, guidelines, and procedures to enhance coordinated school health programs.
(f) Fostering and promoting staff development for school nurses, which may include planning and providing orientation, coordinating or providing educational offerings, and networking with universities and other providers of continuing education to meet identified needs.
(g) Promoting quality assurance in school health services by initiating and coordinating a quality assurance program that includes needs assessment, data collection and analysis, and evidenced-based practices.
(h) Participating in state-level public interagency partnerships and private partnerships with statewide stakeholders to foster a coordinated school health program, representing school nurses in multidisciplinary collaborations.
(i) Initiating, participating in, and using research studies related to a coordinated school health program, the health needs of children and youth, school nursing practice, and related issues.
(j) Serving as the department’s liaison regarding school health issues with various state agencies to include the State Department of Public Health, the State Department of Health Care Services, and the Legislature.

33487.
 (a) On or before December 31 of each year, the state school nurse consultant shall submit a report to the Governor and the Legislature.
(b) The report required in subdivision (a) shall include both of the following:
(1) A summary of the activities of the state school nurse consultant during the reporting year.
(2) Specific recommendations deemed appropriate and necessary concerning school nurse services and school health service programs.
(c) A report submitted to the Legislature pursuant to subdivision (a) shall be submitted in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code.

SEC. 3.

 This act is an urgency statute necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety within the meaning of Article IV of the California Constitution and shall go into immediate effect. The facts constituting the necessity are:
Since the administration prioritized reopening in-person education for pupils during the COVID-19 pandemic, it is urgently necessary to ensure school districts have the support and planning tools needed to reopen safely. In order to ensure the safety of teachers, staff, and pupils, it is necessary for this act to take effect immediately.