School Nurse Teacher Certification

A Pathway to School Nurse Certification

group shot of seven school nurse teachers

School nursing is a specialty with unique requirements.  Rhode Island continues to be a progressive leader by employing certified School Nurse Teachers (SNT). These professionals have achieved both clinical, and teaching and learning competencies. School nurses are leaders who provide evidence-based health care, health education and health promotion for the entire school community, drive policy change, connect families to community resources and advocate for healthy school environments. 

Rhode Island College offers a Credential Review Pathway for nurses interested in completing the requirements for the Rhode Island All Grades School Nurse Teacher Certificate (Pk-12).  The focused course sequence prepares school nurse teachers for the unique and specialized school and class environments. This is the only Rhode Island Department of Education approved SNT pathway. 

School Nurse Teacher Certification

The Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) is no longer conducting transcript reviews for School Nurse Teacher Certification. To meet the requirements to earn this certification, RIDE recommends that you complete a Credential Review Pathway (CRP) through Rhode Island College, a Credential Review Consortium Institution. The most common set of requirements recommended is an eight-class sequence of courses. See the tab below titled “Course Requirements.”

Please Note: Many courses taken for School Nurse Teacher Certification are transferrable to RIC’s M.Ed. in Health Education Program. Students who have successfully completed their first four courses in the CRP program and have a GPA of 3.0 or greater will have the GRE requirement waived. For further information email Carol Cummings.

Prospective and current school nurse teachers who want to achieve school nurse certification through Rhode Island College’s credentialing pathway must meet the following requirements:

  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution
  • record of past and ongoing academic excellence (ex., a minimum GPA of 3.0)
  • current Rhode Island R.N. license
  • three years of documented experience as a full-time R.N. (or an individually accepted equivalent)

Once enrolled you are expected to attain extensive teaching experience in the desired certification area. RIC’s SNT Credential Review Pathway course plan includes supervised teaching experiences, arranged by your professors, that meet the RIDE certification requirements for student teaching. You will not need to complete additional student teaching hours. Work experience in a non-classroom school nurse teacher (SNT) position or as a teacher’s assistant does not meet this requirement. You must be fully in charge of the class to meet this requirement. 

Alternatively, individuals can complete the full requirements to earn certification in a state with which Rhode Island has certificate reciprocity. Individuals who choose this option should contact RIDE to complete the reciprocity paperwork after completing all requirements for that state. How to Get Certified, from the Rhode Island Department of Education, provides reciprocity information.

RIC Credential Review Pathway (CRP) Potential Application

FSEHD – Credential Review Pathway provides application directions for you, if you have a RI School Nurse Teacher Preliminary Certification and need to renew your certification or would like to begin working toward becoming a certified school nurse teacher through RIC.

When You'll be Contacted After Applying

The process of assessing the online application and documentation can take up to 14 weeks after you submit:

Additional Directions for Completing the Online Application
  • Create a separate .pdf document for each transcript and form that you upload. 
  • You can complete the application in full at one time or save your work and return to the application at a later time. 
  • If you are accepted, you will receive a Plan of Study and other recommendations from the CRP office. If you are not, you will receive an explanation of the requirements you will need to meet in order for you to qualify.
  • RIC faculty CRP assessors are not expected to assess applications during the summer (May 15 to late August). Applications submitted between April 15 and June 3 may not be assessed until Sept. 8. If you are applying for the re-issuance of an expert residency preliminary certificate (emergency certificate) and are required by RIDE to submit a CRP Status Form and Plan of Study as evidence of enrollment, we advise that you submit your CRP application materials and $150 fee no later than Feb. 6 to prepare for the Aug. 31 deadline. The Status Form and Plan of Study should be assessed by May 15.

Certification requirements are met by completing the following courses:

  • HPE 500: Introduction to Health Education and Health Promotion 
  • HPE 503: Health Education Pedagogy 
  • HPE 504: Application of Health Content 
  • HPE 531: Methods and Procedures for School Nurse Teachers
  • CEP 532: Theories and Methods of Counseling
  • CEP 552: Psychological Perspectives on Learning and Teaching
  • SPED 531: Universal Design for Educating All Students
  • FNED 502: Social Issues in Education (recommended) or FNED 546: Foundations of Education

Students who are interested in transferring credits from other institutions must obtain copies of the syllabus and a full description of at least two assignments and submit these to

Students enrolled before September 2018 Students who took HPE 404, 501 and/or 505 will have a course substitution form completed on their behalf during their Exit Verification and are considered to have completed the requirements for HPE 500, 503 and/or 504, respectively. All others should complete the full course series noted.

Order of Courses 

  • HPE 500 (f), 503 (s) and 504 (f) should be taken in this order, as the content of each course builds upon the content of the previous course. 
  • It is recommended that students begin with HPE 500 in the first fall of their enrollment and complete HPE 531 after completing HPE 500, 503 and 504.
  • Students are eligible to enroll in other courses such as the CEP, SPED or FNED courses before enrolling in HPE 500 and these do not have to be taken in an order.

When Can I Begin Taking Courses?

You may begin taking courses while your application is being reviewed and before you receive your plan of study. You may want to contact Dr. Carol Cummings, SNT CRP Liaison before enrolling in your first course if you are still waiting on your plan of study.

  • Students who have never attended Rhode Island College will need to create an account to obtain a username, password and appointment time in order to register for classes. To do this, go to Registration - General Info and follow the directions in the New Non-Degree Student Registration to create an account and obtain a username and password.
  • Students enrolled in a Credential Review Pathway (CRP) are categorized as nondegree-seeking students and have a later registration date than students who are enrolled in degree programs. This does not mean that you will lose your seat in a class or that you need to do anything before your registration date. It is purely procedural. The Registrar's Office provides registration dates.
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