Should I be worried?

  1. Hi everyone!
    My name is Kim and this is my first post, though I've been lurking for a bit and soaking up all the info like a sponge.

    I'm set to start LPN school in January. For me (and the way the programs are set up in San Antonio) this was the best fit...LPN to RN to BSN. I've got a little bit of experience. I was an EMT in the military and have worked as a CNA and a surgical tech.

    Here's my dilemma. I was looking at the NCLEX-PN and -RN pass rates on the TX board site and St Phillip's College had the lowest pass rate (69.57%) in 2005 for the entire state for RNs. There LPN rate wasn't so hot either.

    So how worried should I be? I chose this program because I can attend in the evening, and the cost was right. If I choose another daytime program I'll have the added cost of not only a more expensive program, but daycare for my baby and after school care for my boys.

    I've got my GI Bill to help out with the cost, and I'm not sure yet how much I'll get in financial aid. I'd like to not rack up an astronomical amount of debt getting my ADN since I plan to continue on and persue my BSN.

    Is it worth it to pony up more $$ for a school with a higher pass rate? Should I stick with the plan and hope that I'll be one of the people that pass?

    Thanks
    Kim
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  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   fgoff
    WELCOME!

    One low rate is a little omething to be concerned about. But is not info enough to go on for me. One year might be a "burp".

    Some questions?

    What were the past years passing rate??? ALL Low??? Getting Lower each yr???

    How many graduates where tested? If only 3 test and 1 fails 75%.

    The adimistration &/or admissions offices of the program should be able to tell you these things.

    Sometimes it helps to know the demographics of the graduates. How many GED's, second career, age,sex... Some times it only muddies the water.

    Also ask what they have done to bring up the passing rate.

    The State Boards of Nursing that approve any program monitors the passing rates. If they fall below a benchmark (say 75%) the school might be put on probation, need to do a self study and implement a plan of action to bring improve the rate. If this has started they should be willing to discuss what the school will be doing different for you to see that you have a better chance at passing your boards.

    Best of luck!!!
    fgoff
  4. by   Daytonite
    hi, kim!

    i think there's a couple of things to consider.

    first, every school has to have their curriculum approved by the state board of nursing. so, the school you've chosen is teaching what the texas board of nursing feels they should be teaching.

    second, every school has different admission policies and procedures. perhaps the school you've chosen isn't very good at assessing people who are good test takers.

    third, maybe the school is just easy on students and doesn't weed out those who are not going to be good nurses. maybe the people in charge of the nursing program are just very optimistic and feel that everyone should be given a long rope to prove himself or herself and it's not working so well as the nclex statistics are showing.

    fourth, you found an evening program, right? how many other mothers do you imagine might also be in their program for the very same reasons you chose it? perhaps many are also mothers who aren't able to put in the study time it requires to be able to pass the nclex. family, children, school, studying. some people aren't good delegators of their time or they cut corners somewhere so that nclex study time suffered, don't you think?

    fifth, it's the students who sit down to take the nclex exam, not the school. it may be that the school just hasn't been coaching the students on how to perform on this exam. it does have questions that are different from any other type of exam you've ever taken. so, the school may be teaching the nursing, but just not helping to show the students how to pass the nclex. that can be easily remedied by taking a nclex review course or studying on your own from nclex study books as you go through your lvn course.

    sixth, look at the other side of this coin. 69.57% did pass! that's not exactly total failure.

    i would go to this school and study my butt off. i'd take every opportunity to learn, learn, learn. check out this website every monday.
    http://www.learningext.com/students/qofweek.asp - question of the week. every monday a question from the online nclex-rn examination course from ncsbn (the people who write the nclex and nclex-pn exams) and it's answer is posted here on this page.

    you already have the opportunity in front of you. what is important is what you do with it. you can take a lemon and make lemonade or allow it to sour and throw it away. as the banner in my signature states, someone will take the opportunity you miss--and gladly too! come on, soldier! you know that you have to take some responsibility in your own studying in order to achieve your goal. no one is going to hand this lvn license to you. you may have found a little flaw with this school. is anyone or any institution perfect? use this knowledge that you found out to your advantage to overcome and adapt. (i'm thinking of clint eastwood talking about his recon unit in heartbreak ridge!)

    welcome to allnurses!
    Last edit by Daytonite on Sep 8, '06
  5. by   allthingsbright
    Kim,

    If you do decide to go there, make sure you use NCLEX-PN study guides throughout the course of the program and make sure you understand the rationales behind the answers on the questions. If you find yourself failing certain areas of NCLEX (say Med Surg or OB) questions, study harder in those areas. If you take learning in your own hands you should do fine, I would think.

    Can you talk with anyone who has graduated form the school and ask about organization of the program, etc?

    GL!
  6. by   southeRNyankeee
    Thanks everyone for such helpful and encouraging responses

    fgoff: looks like their #s are declining, down from 90% in 2001. Last year 48 passed out of 69 students.

    daytonite: I've actually considered every point you made. In addition, I wondered how many people were trying to work FT as an LPN during the day and do the LPN to RN program at night. You're right, I finally have the opportunity. Seems as though the evening programs are few and far between. I just want to make sure I'm not messing up my opportunity with a school that leaves a lot to be desired.

    allthingsbright: I don't really know anyone that has been in the program, but I might be able to talk to someone in the office or corner a student on his/her way out the door! I'm pretty good with learning on my own so I hope I'll be ok...thanks

    Kim

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