How to Balance Teacher-Nurse Collaboration in Special Education

No matter how much you love your child, the fact of the matter is that having a child with special needs often proves challenging. There are a lot of things to take into consideration to ensure your child is receiving the utmost quality care regarding their health, education, and social, emotional, and physical development

When it comes to bringing your child into a classroom environment, many factors are dependent on the severity of your child’s disability. If he or she has limited motor control or a fragile immune system, they might not only require specialized academic instruction, but also a licensed healthcare professional who can attend to their medical needs on a daily basis.

If this is the case, managing an open and product collaboration of the teacher and the nurse is crucial. Both provide essential services, but is there a line drawn between the services that each provides? In other words, should a nurse also cater to academic needs and should a teacher also cater to physical needs?

Here is a look at how to successfully balance the collaboration between a special education teacher and a nurse so that your child can gain the most benefits possible.

Discuss the Needs: In order to ensure your child receives the appropriate services and treatment from both the teacher and the nurse, you are going to have to discuss the individual needs of your child with each person. Make sure that both the teacher and the nurse are well aware of your child’s mental and physical capabilities so that they can provide the right services.

Clearly Define Roles: While yes, it is acceptable for a teacher to provide physical support when she can and for a nurse to provide academic support when she can, it is important that their individual roles are clearly defined. For example, the teacher should know exactly what it is that she should be focusing on, and the same can be said for the nurse. While a teacher may be able to provide physical support, she may not know how to properly work with the equipment or provide medical support properly – and vice versa regarding a nurse.

Establish a Team Atmosphere: Regardless what type of expert services each of these individuals provide, they should both be working together in order to provide the best experience possible for your child. They should think of themselves as a team that is working together for the betterment of your child. While certainly, one person is trained and licensed to provide services in one particular area, ultimately, they should be working together to provide your child with the proper services. When a teacher and a nurse work together in the special education setting, your child reaps the most benefits possible.

A teacher and a nurse need to work together, yet understand their distinct roles when servicing a special needs child. Likewise, you, the parent, need to take an active role in ensuring the effective collaboration of your child’s special education teacher and nurse because it is your child who their individual services are benefitting.

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