What's New

Rhode Island Department of Health Newly Released Guidance and Resources Regarding Enterovirus D-68 (EV-D68)

Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) Guidelines for Schools/Day Care Settings

Information About EV-D68 for Parents

CDC Handwashing Resources

Click here to join the RI Department of Health  Health News and Information email list to receive health advisories and updated information.

Click on the CDC Keep Your Child from Getting and Spreading Enterovirus D68 posters in English and Spanish below:






Rhode Island Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Ebola Virus Guidance

 RI HEALTH:  Screening for Ebola Virus in Ambulatory Settings
RI HEALTH:  Algorithm for Screening Patients for Ebola Virus Disease
CDC:  Advice for Colleges, Universities, and Students about Ebola in West Africa


RI Bill Requiring Concussion Training for School Nurses Becomes Law

The School and Youth Programs Concussion Act, requiring school athletic coaches and volunteers to take an annual refresher course on recognizing concussions and traumatic brain injuries, has expanded. The new law (RIGL §16-91-3) requires that all school nurses must complete a training course and an annual refresher course in concussions and traumatic brain injuries.

Concussion and traumatic-brain-injury training materials and resources are available on the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and on the Rhode Island Interscholastic League websites at the links below:

2014 RI School Nurse Teacher of the Year

The Rhode Island Certified School Nurse Teachers (RICSNT) recently honored Bernadette McDowell, school nurse teacher at Winman Junior High, recognizing her as the School Nurse Teacher of the Year. Congratulations Bernadette! Read more...


HEALTH Organizes Community Clinics for Immunization Against Influenza

With the number of influenza cases circulating throughout Rhode Island and the country continuing to rise, the Rhode Island Department of Health (HEALTH) has organized a series of no-cost vaccination clinics throughout the state over the next three weeks.

The first of 17 public clinics will be held on Wednesday, January 8 at the Warwick Mall from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. As additional clinics are scheduled, they will be added to the clinic schedule available at: www.health.ri.gov/find/vaccinations

All clinics are open to anyone older than 6 months of age. There is no cost for a flu shot and there are no insurance requirements at the clinics. People who have health insurance, however, are asked to bring their insurance cards.

For more information about the flu and flu vaccination clinics, contact the Health Information Line at 401-222-5960 / RI Relay 711.

CDC: Holiday Health and Safety Tips

The 12 Ways to HealthThe holidays offer a perfect opportunity for enjoying loved ones, celebrating life, being grateful, and reflecting on what’s important. They are also a time to appreciate the gift of health. Support health and safety for yourself and others by following these timeless holiday tips.


Stay Safe During Extreme Cold, Winter Weather

The Rhode Island Department of Health issued an advisory to remind people of precautions to take in extreme cold and during winter storms. It is especially important that all Rhode Islanders take the following precautions during this time of inclement weather. Read more…

Fall 2013 School-Located Flu Vaccination Clinics

A school-located flu vaccination program runs each fall throughout Rhode Island. Clinics are for students in kindergarten through 12th grade. There is no out-of-pocket charge for flu vaccination for students. The insurance information of students who have health insurance will be collected, but no student will be turned away for a lack of insurance. Please visit http://www.health.ri.gov/find/vaccinations/ for the 2013 fall schedule.

CDC: Head Back to School Safer and Healthier This Year!

Heading back to school is an exciting time of year for students and families. As students go back to school, it is important that they eat healthy and stay active, are up to date on their immunizations, and know the signs of bullying for a healthier and safer school year. Read more...


U.S. Department of Education Asks School Leaders to Initiate New Efforts to Reduce Gender-Based Violence

The U.S. Department of Education issued a Dear Colleague letter to state school chiefs requesting immediate action to reduce gender-based violence in schools and to help ensure all students are safe. The letter and additional materials were released during a recent White House event on teen dating violence prevention, which was part of National Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month, and the Obama Administration’s efforts to raise awareness of gender-based violence. Click here for more information and resources including Gender-Based Violence Among School-Aged Youths: What Schools Can Do.

For information about Get Smart, Get Help, Get Safe, please see the National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments.

U.S. Department of Education’s REMS Technical Assistance Center

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Safe and Healthy Students (OSHS) Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools (REMS) Technical Assistance (TA) Center
is currently undergoing some exciting changes to better serve your needs. We apologize for any inconvenience during this process; however, our comprehensive website will be available again shortly! Thank you for your patience.

For information and resources relating to school emergency plans, see Creating and Updating School Emergency Management Plans.


Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
Toolkit to Help Prevent Suicide

Preventing Suicide: A Toolkit for High Schools cover

Preventing Suicide: A Toolkit for High Schools aims to assist high schools and school districts in designing and implementing strategies that prevent suicide and promote behavioral health.



Rhode Island Physical Education

RI General Laws, Chapters 08-254 & 08-463, state that by September 2012, school PE curricula must be aligned with the standards and performance indicators in The Rhode Island Physical Education Framework.

101 Tips for Teaching Nutrition Concepts in Physical Education

The National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) and Fuel Up to Play 60 have teamed up to create 101 Tips for Teaching Nutrition Concepts in Physical Education. Fuel Up to Play 60 is a free in-school nutrition and physical activity program that encourages children to develop life-long healthy habits. Would you like to bring   Fuel Up to Play 60 to your school?  Click here to register your school.

RI Safe Schools Act: Statewide Bullying Policy Effective June 30, 2012

The Statewide Bullying Policy, known as the Safe Schools Act, was promulgated pursuant to the authority set forth in §16-21-34 of the General Laws of Rhode Island. The purpose of the Policy is to ensure a consistent and unified statewide approach to the prohibition of bullying at school. Click here for a summary and frequently asked questions of the new RI Statewide Bullying Policy.

Education Secretary Arne Duncan Announces Re-launch of StopBullying.gov

Education Secretary Arne Duncan reflects on the past year of bullying prevention activities and encourages a shift from talking about bullying to taking action, as we all have a role to play in preventing and responding to bullying. Secretary Duncan announces the re-launch of StopBullying.gov, which features concrete steps for everyone to take.

National Sexuality Education Standards for Sexuality Education in Public Schools

Four leading health organizations released the first-ever national standards for sexuality education in schools. Published in the Journal of School Health, National Sexuality Education Standards: Core Content and Skills, K–12, provides guidance on core content for sexuality education that is developmentally and age-appropriate for students in grades kindergarten through grade 12.

The standards are the result of a cooperative effort by the American Association of Health Education, the American School Health Association, the National Education Association Health Information Network, and the Society of State Leaders of Health and Physical Education, in coordination with the Future of Sex Education (FoSE) Initiative. Nearly 40 stakeholders including content experts, medical and public health professionals, teachers, sexuality educators, and young people developed the standards in a two-year process.

For additional information contact:

Midge Sabatini, Ed.D. 

RI Department of Education


Rosemary Reilly-Chammat, Ed.D.

RI Department of Education