Message from Nurse Anderson

Hello Jefferson Family!


My name is Tanisha Anderson and I am your new school nurse. Throughout my nursing career I have worked as a mother/baby nurse, served as a nurse manager of a post partum and nursery unit, a nursing administrative coordinator and a school nurse. I look forward to working with all of you this year and years to come.


To keep you and your family safe during this pandemic here are a couple of health tips from the CDC:


Wash your hands often

· Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

· If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.

· Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

Avoid close contact

· Put 6 feet of distance between yourself and people who don’t live in your household.

Cover your mouth and nose with a mask when around others

· Everyone should wear a mask in public settings and when around people who don’t live in your household, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.

o Masks should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.

Cover coughs and sneezes

· Always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow and do not spit.

· Throw used tissues in the trash.

Clean and disinfect

· Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light

switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.

Monitor Your Health Daily

· Be alert for symptoms. Watch for fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19.

· Follow CDC guidance if symptoms develop.


How to Talk to Younger Kids About Changes at School During COVID-19

School year 20-21 has been a big transition for you and your kids. How do you talk to younger kids about big changes at school in a way that makes them feel safe and supported? (, 2020)


Here are some tips:

  1. Check in with yourself. Before you sit down to talk to your child about school, pause to prepare.
  2. Gather information. Help your child understand what they see: masks, desk spacing, hand hygiene stations, and sticking to the same groups. You might want to go over how germs spread as a way to help them understand new rules.
  3. Figure out what your child already knows and what/how they understand it. Build on what they already know. Be ready to help them clarify any misconceptions they might have. If your child understands the reason schools closed in the spring, start there when you talk about why certain things are different.
  4. Validate and normalize your child’s feelings. Your child may have an emotional reaction to changes in the classroom. It’s comforting for them to know they’re being heard, and that their feelings are normal.
  5. Double check their understanding. Ask your child to explain back to you what’s going on. It can take a while for new messages to sink in, and younger children often think they understand something even if they don’t. Listen closely for areas of confusion, so you can clear up any misunderstandings.

During this transition, I hope that you can be patient with your child and yourself.


Important Considerations for Virtual AND In-Person Hybrid Learning

Whether your children are learning virtually or planning to return for hybrid in-person learning, there is fear and uncertainty about the spread of COVID-19 and how our lives have changed. We are in this together to help your children feel safe and keep healthy routines.

Remind and Model These Healthy Routines

  • Mask up. Cover your nose and mouth, keep hands away from your face. To remove mask, stretch ear loops/strings forward and hold by loops/strings, then fold outside corners together.

  • Back Up. Practice social distancing. An outstretched pool noodle helps picture what six feet looks like. Practice ways of greeting and feeling connected with thumbs up or waving instead of high-fives or hugging.

  • Wash up. Consider having personal supplies of hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol-based) and a packet of tissues included in your child’s backpack. Practice hand hygiene together: wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer/wipes: front, back, fingertips and remember wrists and thumbs!

  • Eat up. Please ensure your child eats a hearty breakfast before coming to school.

Update PowerSchool Parent Portal


  • Please update your contact information and your childrens’ health information.

  • E-Sign the PARENT AGREEMENT LETTER OF COMPLIANCE WITH COVID-19 GUIDELINES if you are choosing hybrid in-person learning. Your e-signature is required a for your child to participate in in-person learning.

  • If you are having difficulties accessing your account, please visit or email



The SOMSD school nurses developed a chart to summarize the response to COVID+ activity in the school community and to provide clarification on school notification procedures.


When a SOMSD staff member or student tests positive for COVID-19, it is the responsibility of that staff member or the parent of the student to notify the principal who notifies the superintendent. The respective local Department of Health (DOH) – South Orange or Maplewood - will be notified immediately. The local DOH, who receives the actual lab report, conducts Contact Tracing. Based on the circumstances of each case, the local DOH provides the District with guidance as to the appropriate and timely notification of staff and families of a confirmed case while maintaining confidentiality.





What are Physicals For?

Have you ever wondered why your child should have an annual physical? A lot can change in a child’s or teen’s health within a year’s time. By scheduling an annual physical, you are able to monitor the growth, health and development of your child in addition to safeguarding against potential physical problems that could arise. Optimum health will foster success in the classroom.

What are some of the Physical Exam requirements by SOMSD and why?

Pursuant to N.J.A.C. 6A:16-2.2, each school district shall:

  • ensure that students receive medical examinations upon enrollment into school which have been conducted at the student’s medical home, and

It is important to determine that the student is fit to participate in any health, safety or physical education course required by law.

What does the CDC say about having a Physical Exam each year?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), your child’s yearly exam ensures that he or she is up-to-date on vaccines to protect against serious diseases. Safeguarding your child's health as well as the health of classmates, friends and others in your community is top priority for doctors and school administrators .

Are Well-Child Visits, Physical Exams and Sports Exams the Same Type of Visit?

No.  A Sports Physical is different from a well child Physical Exam; however, each of these annual exams are categorized as preventative care visits. Preventative care visits allow for your child to have a complete examination of his/her growth and development in order to prevent problems. These visits are important to keep children healthy and to focus on what is being done well in addition to changes that can improve your child's wellness.

What is the Best Time of Year to Schedule My Child’s Physical?

The ideal time to schedule an appointment for your child’s annual physical is before his or her next academic year - think spring and summer before the next school year. However, some physicians prefer to do the annual exam around your child's birthday.

Click here for a copy of the Physical Exam Form.

If and when you take your child(ren) for their annual physical please forward a copy to me at


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