Health Services

Health Services

School nurses are employed for the purpose of rendering such services as prescribed in the Pennsylvania School Code in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Department of Health. The certified school nurse provides nursing care to the school community in accordance with current Pennsylvania nursing standards.

Direct services include:

  • Providing and documenting nursing assessment, diagnosis and treatment. Treatment is as prescribed by the school physician.
  • Performing and documenting PA state-mandated screenings to include growth screenings, vision screenings and hearing screenings.
  • Coordinating and documenting both private and school physical and dental examinations.
  • Managing and controlling acute and chronic diseases, including monitoring of required immunizations.
  • Delegating appropriately to ancillary staff the performance of care and procedures.

School health services are, in part, intended to be preventative in nature through providing individual health teaching and counseling. The duties and functions of school nurses are determined, in large part, by the health conditions of the population they serve.

The Pennsylvania School Health screening program includes the following:

  • Each student is weighed and measured every year starting in kindergarten. In addition, a Body Mass Index (BMI) for age percentile is calculated on all students.
  • Each student has a near and far vision test every year.
  • Each student has a hearing test in kindergarten and Grades 1, 2, 3, 7 and 11. Hearing tests are done yearly on those identified as special education students. In addition, hearing tests are done yearly on those students identified as having hearing problems.
  • Scoliosis screening is done in Grades 6 and 7.

Health Services Staff

High School Health Office: 412-318-1417
  • Jennifer Siegle, Certified School Nurse
  • Cynthia Benoit, LPN Support Nurse

Middle School Health Office: 412-318-1470

  • Alisha Ravenstahl, Certified School Nurse
  • Kelly Marshalek, RN Support Nurse

Highcliff Elementary Health Office: 412-318-1585

  • Maria Falcone, Certified School Nurse
  • Frances Halley, RN Support Nurse

McIntyre Elementary Health Office: 412-318-1625

  • Maria Falcone, Certified School Nurse
  • Jessica Thompson, LPN Support Nurse

Ross Elementary Health Office: 412-318- 1545

  • Stephanie Reif, Certified School Nurse
  • Debra Wells, RN Support Nurse

West View Elementary Health Office: 412-318-1502

  • Stephanie Reif, Certified School Nurse
  • Rebecca Hartle, LPN Support Nurse 

Please consider the following guidelines when making the decision to send your child to school:

  • Fever of 100 degrees or higher. Children should be fever free (<100°) for 24 hours off of anti-fever medication before returning to school. 
  • Acute cold and/or persistent cough
  • Vomiting/Diarrhea - Children should be free of symptoms for 24 hours before returning to school.
  • Inability to sleep most of the night because they don't feel well

North Hills School District follows the Allegheny County Health Department guidance to determine when a child should return to school after an infectious illness. Listed below are a few of the more common conditions that affect school-age children.

  • Chicken Pox (Varicella) – Exclude from school until all vesicles have dried and crusted.
  • Conjunctivitis (pink eye) – Exclude from school until 24 hours after the start of appropriate treatment and all discharge is gone and eyes are dry, or until determined by a physician to be noncommunicable.
  • Flu (influenza) – Exclude from school until symptoms are gone.
  • Head Lice – Exclude from school until after first treatment. NHSD follows a No-Nit Policy and students may return to school when they are determined nit free by the school nurse.
  • Impetigo – Exclude from school until sores are no longer draining.
  • Mononucleosis - Student may return to school when fever free and able to resume normal activities.
  • Ringworm – Exclude from school until immediately after first treatment. Body lesions that are not dried should be covered.
  • Scarlet Fever/Strep Throat - Excluded from school until 24 hours after treatment is started.
Medication Policy
The law which regulates the administration of medication in the school is the same as that applies to hospitals and other institutions. The school cannot dispense or allow any child to take any medication without written permission from a physician and parent. This includes both prescription and over the counter drugs. If you anticipate or find that your child must take medicine during school hours, please obtain a copy of the medication policy and a form from the health office. All medicine, which comes to school, should be turned into the Nurse’s Office immediately upon arrival and must be in the original prescription bottle, or the original package.
North Hills follows the Allegheny County Health Department school immunization requirements. Immunizations for all students are:
  • 4 doses of tetanus, diphtheria, and acellular pertussis* (1 dose on or after the fourth birthday and usually given as DTP or DTaP or if medically advisable, DT or Td)
  • 4 doses of polio (4th dose on or after fourth birthday and at least 6 months after previous dose given. A fourth dose is not necessary if the third dose was administered at age 4 years or older and at least 6 months after the previous dose.)
  • 2 doses of measles, mumps, rubella (Usually given as MMR)
  • 3 doses of hepatitis B
  • 2 doses of varicella (chickenpox) or evidence of immunity

For attendance in Grade 7 (in addition to the above) - Note: There is no grace period, and these vaccines are not considered provisional.

  • 1 dose of tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis (Tdap) by first day of Grade 7
  • 1 dose of meningitis vaccine (MCV4) by first day of Grade 7

For attendance in Grade 12 (in addition to both lists above)

  • Second dose of MCV by the fifth day of Grade 12 (If second dose was given at 16 years of age or older that shall count as the Grade 12 dose.) 

If a child has not received all of the vaccines required, the child may be provisionally admitted to school only if evidence of the administration of at least one dose of each vaccine is given to the school administrator or designee and the parent or guardian’s plan for completion of the required immunizations is made part of the child’s health record. Immunization requirements should be completed within 8 months of the date of provisional admission to school.

These requirements allow for medical reasons and religious beliefs. If your child is exempt from immunizations, he/she may be removed from school during an outbreak.

Pennsylvania’s school immunization requirements can be found in 28 PA.CODE CH.23 (School Immunization). Contact your health care provider or 1-877 PA HEALTH for more information.

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