Health Services


Vanguard School Health Services is sometimes known as "The Nurse’s Office." Health Services is coordinated by Mary McCarter BS, RN, M.Ed. Nurse McCarter maintains a Professional Educator License - Certificated in School Nursing. Her services are shared by Forest View Educational Center, The Academy, Life (Transition), Newcomer Center, Vanguard School, and the Career Life Skills Program at John Hersey High School. Ms. McCarter, is one of the specialists in the Student Service Team. Ms. McCarter assists students with academic, emotional, behavioral, health and legal issues that might arise in their lives. She provides a link between home and school. The specialists provide more individualized assistance with decision making for all students as well as serve as liaisons to outside agencies and services.

Ms. McCarter provides daily health care for students, as well as coordinates emergency care for students and staff. Directing the comprehensive school health program, which meets the needs of the students, school, and community are an integral part of her role. The following roles are just some of those carried out by Ms. McCarter:

  • provides vision and hearing screening
  • offers counseling to students based on personal health needs
  • coordinates student medication
  • recommends educational adaptations as necessary for individual needs including special education
  • recommends entrance into the adaptive physical education program
  • serves as a liaison between the school, student, parent, and physician regarding the student’s health status when under a physician’s care
  • assists families in using available community health resources
  • supervises compliance with physical and immunization regulations with the Illinois School Code and Illinois Department of Public Health
  • maintains up-to-date cumulative health records.

Additionally, Ms. McCarter is a certified yoga instructor. She has offered yoga classes as a gym option.

It is our belief that in order for a child to be successful academically, we must first look at their overall health. Nutrition, exercise, relaxation, good communication, healthy relationships, stress management, immunizations, physical, dental, vision and hearing exams are all part of looking at each student in a holistic manner. We believe that these physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual needs are essential and provide a foundation in which learning can then take place. Ms. McCarter coaches (or guides) administration to provide a healthy environment in which our students can grow to their full potential.

District 214/FVEC in conjunction with Advocate Children's Hospital brings a mobile clinic to the premises several times a year. Children who have  Public Aid (Medicaid/CHIP) or no insurance may be seen for Physicals and Immunizations.  Contact the Vanguard office or Nurse McCarter for more information and the required paperwork.