Stress Level

  1. Does this get better with experience? I know some people have posted about how much less stress they experience in school nursing versus hospital nursing but I am having the opposite experience! I feel like I'm behind all.the.time and irritated. It took nearly 2 1/2 years for me to burn out in NICU. How in the heck has it only taken 8 months in school nursing?!?
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  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   Jen-Elizabeth
    Get through a year is all I have to say. It does get better. You find your grove and what works for your kiddos. You get faster and your BS meter, as I call it, gets better. My first year as a school nurse was SUCH a learning curve and I was exhausted!

    Does the stress disappear? Nope. Sometimes the kids and staff have me climbing the wall. But I am only a few hours away from my April break (no school tomorrow and all of next week!) and that is just sweet. And while emergencies can and do happen, kids are generally healthy and I get to see them mature slowly. And that is also just sweet.
  4. by   BethG73
    What's your population like? There is a definite adjustment period - because it is SO different. But, generally, I feel much less stress in my current position. I'm in a K-3 building of only 300 kiddos, though.
  5. by   dakotadenise
    I think it gets better with time. This is my 2nd year and last year was pretty stressful as I didn't get much orientation and never knew "what was around the next corner" so to speak. This year has been much better and I'm already planning things now to make next year flow easier. I think it takes awhile to get in the groove and get everything the way you want it when you take over a job like this. Hope things improve for you!
  6. by   tamarae1
    I had one semester last year and have worked all year this year, so this is my first full year. I am very stressed. So wired when I get home I can't sleep and it is wearing me out. Fast. 40 something days left. I can do this! I am almost caught up. 1 set of screenings left and some puberty ed and we got this year finished! I feel like next year should be easier. I have a full year under my belt now and sort of know what to expect, as far as what happens and when, for the most part.

    I definitely put my whole heart and soul into it. I have to learn to turn off when I leave the building.
  7. by   KKEGS
    I have 1500 kids Pre-K through 8 in 2 buildings. 211 IEPs and goodness knows how many 504s and I have to do the health record review, parent interview, vision and hearing screening for every.single.one. This is the bulk of my job.

    My 6 through 8 graders are pretty needy I've been told compared to the other middle school in the district. 30% of the kids are free and reduced lunch. There are lots of mental health issues and there are 4 social workers and 2 school psychs and even they can't keep up with it all.

    I wonder if a private or or charter school would be a better fit for me. I know they pay less but I have a PRN NICU job to supplement. An opening for a health assistant opened in my daughter's district. It is for an LPN, pays way less than I make now but I wouldn't have to do all the IEP stuff. It's for one elementary school so I wouldn't have to cover two buildings and would be way more hands on. And I wouldn't have to be in charge. I hate being in charge. I actually like flying under the radar, in the background. Just my personality.
  8. by   OldDude
    That is a big workload. I'm PK-5 with 700 kids. Have they had a lot of turnover in that position?
  9. by   KKEGS
    The elementary school has had 3 nurses in 2 school years but the first one had to move to take care of her elderly mother and the second was not invited back for the next school year.

    The middle school has had 3 nurses in 13 years. Nurses in this district tend to stay until retirement.

    I am in talks with my district right now to change up my buildings for next year so I have fewer IEPs but I would still have 1500 students.
    Last edit by KKEGS on Apr 13
  10. by   BethG73
    Quote from kschenz
    I have 1500 kids Pre-K through 8 in 2 buildings. 211 IEPs and goodness knows how many 504s and I have to do the health record review, parent interview, vision and hearing screening for every.single.one. This is the bulk of my job.

    My 6 through 8 graders are pretty needy I've been told compared to the other middle school in the district. 30% of the kids are free and reduced lunch. There are lots of mental health issues and there are 4 social workers and 2 school psychs and even they can't keep up with it all.

    I wonder if a private or or charter school would be a better fit for me. I know they pay less but I have a PRN NICU job to supplement. An opening for a health assistant opened in my daughter's district. It is for an LPN, pays way less than I make now but I wouldn't have to do all the IEP stuff. It's for one elementary school so I wouldn't have to cover two buildings and would be way more hands on. And I wouldn't have to be in charge. I hate being in charge. I actually like flying under the radar, in the background. Just my personality.
    Wow... Aren't current recommendations one nurse per 750 kiddos. Would your school system hire another? Are vision & hearing screens for all a state requirement? We only have to do certain grades. I have little to nothing to do with IEPs...isn't that what the SpEd teacher is for?
  11. by   OldDude
    That's a lot of kids for one lone nurse. I would think a district of that size could spring for a health aid for you. I'll bet there isn't one coach or one counselor or one principal for that same group.
  12. by   Oma to 11
    WOW! That's a lot of kids. I agree, are you sure you have to do vision and hearing on everyone? That seems over the top. I am in a private school with 900 kids and I love it!
  13. by   KKEGS
    According to NASN recommendations we should have 13 school nurses for our district. We have 7. We are currently looking for another one but they will only hire a .6 and the new nurse will only cover one school.

    I do have a health aide at each school and they are great at passing the meds, taking temperatures and doing the basic first aid stuff. But one of my health aides is fairly new and she calls me A LOT. The other one has been doing this for 13 years and rarely needs to ask me a question. She is hoping to switch schools next year so I'll have another new health aide.

    I get constant interruptions from staff and parents all day long. I have some parents who I see practically every morning after they drop off their child. They come into my office to update me about what is going on with their little hypochondriac that day. It is exhausting and I know I will be dealing with these families for YEARS until they move onto high school.

    Gosh, I'm sorry if I'm coming off as super negative. I'm just exhausted and the thought of doing this all again next year is really getting me down. Thanks for letting me vent.
  14. by   SassyTachyRN
    Quote from BethG73
    Wow... Aren't current recommendations one nurse per 750 kiddos. Would your school system hire another? Are vision & hearing screens for all a state requirement? We only have to do certain grades. I have little to nothing to do with IEPs...isn't that what the SpEd teacher is for?
    Same here in regards to IEP's. The SpEd teacher writes the medical portion when they do the IEP by asking the medical questions via interview with the parent. I usually learn things about the kid by reading the medical portion of the IEP, heh. I've had to ask to be involved in some of my kids IEP meetings like my CF kids.... my principal does put me in all medical 504's though.

    I'd put my foot down about the vision and hearing though and just state... state requirements only require these be done in grades x, y, z whether the kid is gen ed or sped. In the past in another district, I wrote in an IEP vision blah blah in 8th grade, date 00/00/0000, when the kid was in 10th grade.

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