Press Release

School Nurse in Chicago Known as Advocate for Her Young Patients Is Recognized as AFT Everyday Hero

For Release: 

Sunday, July 11, 2010


George Jackson

—Lanise Sanders, a school nurse in the Chicago Public Schools, is to be honored as an AFT Everyday Hero on Sunday at the AFT’s national convention for her exceptional commitment to her patients, school and community.

The awards, new this year, are presented to members from each of the AFT’s five employee constituencies, plus a retiree. Sanders was chosen from among four finalists in the healthcare division. The award recognizes an individual or group who has had a profound impact on the workplace or has performed extraordinary community service outside of the job.

Known as a patient advocate, Sanders looks out for the children she sees at school, making connections with them and their families. When she learned that legislation in Illinois would allow unlicensed personnel to administer medication to children in schools, she led a campaign to defeat the measure and alert parents and the public about the dangers of the practice.

Sanders also checks on residents in her community to make sure they are taking their medications and getting regular medical checkups. Sometimes she also provides transportation to get people to their doctors’ appointments.

 Sanders is a member of the Chicago Teachers Union, Local 1.

The AFT is holding its biennial convention July 7-11 in Seattle. Coming together under the theme “Building Futures Together,” more than 3,000 delegates will vote on major union policies that address the need to save and strengthen public education, build common cause with communities, and improve the institutions in which our members work.

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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.