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School Safety from a School Nurse's Perspective: A Public Health Approach to Stemming Gun Violence

By Robin Cogan, MEd, RN, NCSN, FNASN, FAAN posted 03-23-2023 11:51


NASN’s vision is that all students are healthy, safe and ready to learn. Couched in between healthy and ready to learn is our most challenging charge as school nurses, keeping our students safe. Gun violence is now the number one leading cause of death in children and teens, surpassing motor vehicle accidents. Schools have experienced an exponential rise in gun violence in the past five years since Parkland. 


We have accepted the unacceptable for too long. Parents, school staff, and students should not have to worry that their school will be the site of the next school shooting.

“For decades, we’ve treated gun violence as a battle to be won rather than a problem to be solved.” – Nicholas Kristof

School nurses can join in the public health approach to reducing gun violence in schools and communities. We can never accept gun violence as inevitable because it is predictable and therefore, preventable. Imagine a school community that centers school connectedness and healing approaches that promote environments where students flourish, not flounder. 

Come learn with me, Robin Cogan,  at NASN Conference 2023, as we explore the impact school nurses can have by promoting healing centered engagement that increases school safety and embodies NASN’s vision of ensuring our students are healthy, safe, and ready to learn.