Philadelphia school nurses protest layoffs

Philadelphia school nurses plan to protest a recent round of layoffs at district headquarters Wednesday.

They say the cuts have added to the burden on teachers and put students’ health at risk.

Eileen DiFranco, a school nurse with 22 years of experience in the district, organized the group to call attention to what she sees as bad public policy.

She says Harrisburg is ultimately to blame.

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“This problem needs to be seen in context of the deliberate under-funding of the schools by our governor,” DiFranco said. “To balance the budget of the state, a city or a school district on the backs of children, I think, is unconscionable.”

The district has 60 fewer nurses since June, bringing the ratio to 850 students to one nurse. The National Association of School Nurses recommends there be one nurse per 750 students.

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