Education

Ocean Springs School Board declines contract that would replace school RNs

AMANDA McCOY/SUN HERALD 
 Medical instruments rest on a counter of the nurse station at Ocean Springs High School on Tuesday, May 24, 2016. Superintendent Bonita Coleman-Potter said a budget committee has recommended the school district hire on with Singing River Health System, which would mean not renewing contracts for the school district´s six current RNs.
AMANDA McCOY/SUN HERALD Medical instruments rest on a counter of the nurse station at Ocean Springs High School on Tuesday, May 24, 2016. Superintendent Bonita Coleman-Potter said a budget committee has recommended the school district hire on with Singing River Health System, which would mean not renewing contracts for the school district´s six current RNs. SUN HERALD

OCEAN SPRINGS -- The School Board declined to approve a contract that would restructure the school system's health-care complement, paving the way for the possible renewal of the contracts of its six registered nurses whose jobs with the school district were hanging in the balance.

Board members Tuesday night allowed to die without comment a motion to approve a contract with health-care subcontractor Medical Analysis, then moved on to their next agenda item. Medical Analysis' proposal was to replace the district's six RNs with three RNs, three LPNs and a floating nurse practitioner, a change that would have saved the district money.

However, it appears the district's Ocean Springs RNs, with support from medical professionals and parents convinced the board any savings in the budget would end up costing the school district more money down the road.

The board did approve a separate contract with Medical Analysis to provide an off-site health and wellness clinic to school district employees and their covered dependents in a 4-to-1 vote. Trustee Kacee T. Waters voted against that contract.

The School Board will revisit the issue at its June 27 meeting.

Sun Herald will have more details on Tuesday evening's meeting soon.

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