Hi. I agree with the previous posts about taking your pre-reqs at a community college - you will save a ton of money. You should research the programs in which you are interested, because different programs actually have different pre-reqs and you want to make sure that they will accept the transfer credits from that CC.
Also, I too changed careers (from Education background too) and got some of the same eye-rolls that you are getting, but let them roll all they want -- you need to do what will make you feel fulfilled. I looked into Gateway CC because it was close to me, but changed my mind because I wanted a BSN (my long term goals are to get a Master's and teach nursing when I get older). So, more research lead me to Quinnipiac's accelerated BSN program. Because I already had a Bachelor's degree, they transfer your general credits and then the program is 12 months of just the core nursing classes.
That made the most sense for me and my family (4 young children) - whether I did a 1yr or 2yr program it would be a big impact on my family so better to rip off the bandaid with the 1yr program. I didn't know it at the time when I went to school, but there are other colleges/universities around that offer accelerated programs. I would check them out and that way you will have an idea of how you want to proceed and what requirements you will have to meet, etc. I was only able to take 1 pre-req at a time because of my young children/schedules, but I am glad that it worked out that way because I was able to put in the necessary work/time into the classes to get good grades. GPA and grades (especially in your pre-reqs) weigh heavily in one's chances of getting into nursing programs
- I sure you have heard it is incredibly competitive.
I hope this helps...good luck to you on your new journey