Last month, 12-year-old Laporshia Massey died of an asthma attack that started in a school without a nurse on campus.* Her teachers told her, “there’s no nurse, and just to be calm.”* Because of Philly budget cuts, her school’s nurse is only there two days a week, but Laporshia couldn’t wait for another day. She shouldn’t have had to wait another hour. Laporshia listened to her teachers and struggled through her classes. When she got home, her parents rushed her to the hospital. They even flagged down an ambulance in traffic to save precious minutes, but it was too late. What would have happened if a nurse had been able to call for help earlier in the day?
Tell Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett: Please release the $45 million in federal funds that you are currently withholding from Philly schools and could be used to rehire nurses and counselors.
Having nurses and counselors present all day – every day – is essential to making sure children can learn safely. Not another day should go by without full-time nurses and counselors in every school.
The state of education for black children is so bad that they’re dying from having asthma attacks at school. And that doesn’t even address the issue about children of color having increasing rates of having conditions like asthma.
I went to school in a district without a single nurse on staff in any building, ever. Even when conditions aren’t life-threatening, it’s scary.