Getting to Know Mrs Hughes: Our School Nurse

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Getting to Know Mrs Hughes: Our School Nurse

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Many times it seems as if we don’t appreciate those who are always there to look out for us. Of course, everyone at ACP looks out for each other. When it comes to health, however, there’s one person who’s always there to look over and care for us.

Mrs. Hughes, our school nurse, is half way through her first year at Erie as a full-time nurse. Hailing from the border town of Nogales, Arizona, Mrs. Hughes spends her day caring for students who aren’t feeling well. When I asked her for an interview, she happily agreed.

Carrots grown in Mrs. Hughes’s garden. Photo courtesy of Mrs. Hughes.

Q: Why did you decide to come to Erie?
A: After five years of working as a Roving School Nurse for CUSD, I missed not having a “home school” or
main site. When you have to travel to a different school every day, it makes it difficult to get to know the
students, staff and parents. ACP-Erie has a small student population, which allows me to get to know
the students and parents. Knowing their medical needs and having the time to talk to them gives me the
opportunity to provide greater nursing care.

Q: What do you enjoy the most about working here?
A: What I enjoy the most about ACP-Erie are the students and the friendly spirit that is shared around campus. I see gestures of kindness every day: students offering to help carry a heavy backpack to class for another student or someone holding the door open for the person walking behind them. I enjoy witnessing the special kindness that exists between students.

Q: Have you always wanted to be a nurse?
A: When I was a teenager, my father became very ill and was hospitalized long term. I spent a lot of time
in the hospital as my father recovered from his illness. As a result, I witnessed how nurses treated my father with so much compassion, support, and sincere care. I wanted to be that nurse; I wanted to care for others  the way they cared for my father.

One of the carrots from Mrs. Hughes’s garden. Photo courtesy of Mrs. Hughes.

Q: What does a typical day at Erie look like for you?
A: A typical day as a school nurse at ACP-Erie goes like this:

a. Administer medication at various times of the day.
b. Triage and care for students that come into the health office and communicate any concerns with
parents.
c. Screening students for hearing and vision.
d. Monitor immunizations and make sure students are in compliance.
e. Ensure that pertinent staff are aware of students’ medical needs (allergies, seizures, concussions,
etc.).

Q: What do you like to do outside of school?
A: Outside of school I enjoy gardening. It takes a lot of work and patience to grow anything in Chandler,
so when I do manage to grow something or keep it alive for more than a year, it is very rewarding.

Thank you to Mrs. Hughes for giving us a little insight to her life in and outside of school. We appreciate everything that you do for us, from nursing our headaches to icing our bruises.