Tessa McIlraith, MS, BSN, RN



I started my nursing career as a CNA and worked my way from LPN to BSN. Along the way I worked as a perioperative nurse at an orthopedic surgery center. During my BSN program I fell in love with the public health nursing and began subbing as a school nurse. I am currently District Nurse For Burlington-Edison School District. I have 2 girls, one in elementary school and one in high school. My husband works for the city. We recently bought a farm and we have 11 animals from cats to horses and pigs. My family loves the outdoors and sports. My other passion is dance and I teach acrobatics at a local dance studio in my free time. School nursing has been an amazing adventure. I love working with students and families for a longer duration throughout their education. It is gratifying seeing students learn to navigate their health and education goals. Leadership and advocacy are vital to being a school nurse. As a medical professional in the education setting I must keep up on a variety of skills and knowledge about a very wide practice. I enjoy the continual learning and research required to keep up in our schools and with our community needs. My goal is to be an asset to my community for health and wellbeing. Being on the board has helped my confidence and understanding of school nursing. The board provides an opportunity to collaborate and be part of educating nurses in our state and learn from top notch nurses in the industry. Our board is reading From Silence to Voice which discusses the public perspective of nursing and how to grow our professional voice. I appreciate how it encourages us to move from a virtue based conversation about nursing to developing conversations that promote nursing for our breadth of knowledge. Our practice is based on evidence-based practices and we are professionals. As the Legislative Chair I hope to be a voice that helps our legislators and administrators to fully understand and acknowledge the breadth of work school nurses do.