Safe at School

New Jersey

1. Does New Jersey allow school staff members who are not health care professionals to administer insulin?

There is no provision that specifically authorizes this. New Jersey Department of Education regulations specifically authorize the school physician, a certified school nurse or noncertified nurse, a substitute school nurse employed by the school district, and the student's parent to administer medication in schools. N.J.A.C. § 6A:16-2.1. Further, guidance from the New Jersey Department of Education states that only licensed staff and parents can administer medication in school:

Only the following individuals are authorized to administer medication to pupils in schools: - School staff holding a current medical or nursing license (e.g., the school physician or school nurse); - Substitute school nurse employed by the district; - Pupil's parent or guardian; - Pupil approved to self-administer […] 

Regardless, federal laws may allow unlicensed staff to provide this care. This may be necessary so that children with diabetes can access education just like any other child. In case of a conflict between federal and state laws, federal laws protect the rights of children .The law in this area is very complicated so we encourage you to contact us for further information.

2. Does New Jersey allow school staff members who are not health care professionals to administer glucagon?

Yes. New Jersey law specifically requires school nurses to choose unlicensed staff to be trained to administer glucagon when a nurse is not present:

The school nurse shall designate, in consultation with the board of education, additional employees of the school district who volunteer to administer glucagon to a student with diabetes who is experiencing severe hypoglycemia. The designated employees shall only be authorized to administer glucagon, following training by the school nurse or other qualified health care professional, when a school nurse is not physically present at the scene. N.J. Stat. § 18A:40-12.14.

3. Does New Jersey allow students to self-manage diabetes at school?

Yes. Students with a diabetes care plan have a right to perform all kinds of diabetes care, anywhere on school grounds, and during any school-related activities:

[…] a school district shall allow the student to attend to the management and care of the student's diabetes as needed in the classroom, in any area of the school or school grounds, or at any school-related activity if the student has been evaluated and determined to be capable of doing so as reflected in the student's individualized health care plan. N.J. Stat. § 18A:40-12.15.

4. Does New Jersey allow students to carry diabetes supplies such as needles, insulin, and blood glucose testing devices?

Yes. As stated above, students can self-manage diabetes care, which includes “possessing on the student's person at anytime the supplies or equipment necessary to monitor and care for the student's diabetes.” N.J. Stat. § 18A:40-12.15.

For more information, see the following helpful resources: