School Nurses' Experiences Working with Transgender and Gender Diverse Students

School of Nursing faculty, Tammy Neiman, PhD, RN and SON alumnus Laurie A. Sieve DNP, RN, PHN, CNE of St. Catherine University launched a research study with support from the Glen Taylor Nursing Institute for Family and Society. This study may be the first alumni- faculty research supported by the Institute. A brief summary below describes their work that will be presented at the upcoming International Family Nursing Conference.

Transgender and gender diverse adolescents experience an excess burden of stress throughout their primary school years. Transgender and gender diverse youth report elevated levels of victimization, suicide involvement, substance use and high-risk sexual behaviors compared to cisgender peers. An important factor to students’ feelings of safety and supported in their schools may be their relationship with the school nurse. From a school nurses' perspective, fostering a relationship with transgender and gender diverse students can be affected by a variety of factors, including training, past experiences, and personal biases. The purpose of this study is to describe school nurses' experiences working with transgender and gender diverse students, including interactions with parents/guardians. Semi-structured interviews are being conducted in order to develop helpful methods of intervention for overall positive adolescent school experiences.