Substitute School Nurses

  1. Just wondering if you all have problems in your school system with getting nurse substitutes when you are out for a sick day, personal day, etc.?
    I am tired of feeling guilty if I am out sick knowing they most likely will go without a nurse. But hey....we do get sick too !
    thanks for your responses,

    LPN 90
  2. Visit Keepstanding profile page

    About Keepstanding, ADN

    Joined: Jan '05; Posts: 1,677; Likes: 1,652
    School Nursing
    Specialty: 10 year(s) of experience


  3. by   Jane1988
    Although I am not a school nurse, I have substituted myself at our middle school and junior high school. I guess the biggest reason is it hard to find good help is the pay. I was paid less per hour that my 8th son gets for tutoring in the afternoon.

    However, if it were for not going back to school myself I would susstitute again. My husband and I felt the advantage to getting to know the teachers and likewise them getting to know me were outweighed by the payscale. Maybe you can approach nurse/moms with this long-term incentive.

    Question: What is your school district's policy on someone other than a LPN/RN giving medicines if you can not find a replacement? I found out our district allows other personnel to give meds if it only for a short time (one or two days).
  4. by   dianer
    I work in an elementary school in New Jersey. It is impossible to get a school nurse sub. If we do find one it's someone looking for a full time position that we usually lose when they find one. At times we have had a parent who is a nurse who I beg to substitute. I am not out many days, but of course we get sick or my kids get sick. You can't feel guilty, we have lives outside of school.
  5. by   ljv06
    Quote from LPN 90
    Just wondering if you all have problems in your school system with getting nurse substitutes when you are out for a sick day, personal day, etc.?
    I am tired of feeling guilty if I am out sick knowing they most likely will go without a nurse. But hey....we do get sick too !
    thanks for your responses,

    LPN 90

    I am a school nurse in Illinois and am working on my MSN in School Nursing. The issue of Nurse Subs is so citical in my district that it is the focus of my Master's Project. The problem has worsened this year in particular due to increasing medical needs. Another issue is the pay. It is not competitive with area districts as well as other areas in nursing. It is difficult as nurses not to feel we are letting our patients (in this case, the students) down. This is issue seems common in talking with other school nurses, but is not published in the literature. Any comments from other school nurses, would be appreciated.
  6. by   RnforPeds
    I also have a problem getting a sub nurse. I try to find alternate childcare for my kids if they are sick (grandparents, etc.). It is horrible if I am sick and feeling guilty for leaving my school without a nurse. The only way I can sometimes find a sub is if I have advance notice for a conference or appointment or something like that.
  7. by   jen42
    We have a list of about 25 nurses we can call in to sub- mostly retired nurses who want a bit of per diem pay. It's great if I know I am going away- if I get sick the night before, it's a little more spotty. Luckily, we have amazing office staff who can take care of the health room and call me with any questions.

    I have 12 sick days a year and I will use them if I need to! It's my 1st year of school nursing and I'm getting sick constantly. I might as well stay home and not infect the other kids!
  8. by   Keepstanding
    It's great to get your reply's school nurses ! Thanks so much !
    I guess not being able to get sub's is a national problems here in the US.
    We have a small list of nurses and most of the time I will try calling them if I am sick and they have the same general reply.." oh sorry, I am working at my real job today". ! Well....duh....take your name off of the sub list then !
    I mean, I will make 5-6 calls (all long distance) only to get no-one. Usually I will just drag myself into work, fever, nausea and all. It is really upsetting because often times when I am out, I get a lot of grief from teachers who lay a guilt trip on me because I was not there when I was needed.
    Well ya know, we are around vomiting, feverish, strep throat kids all day every to catch what they have every so often is pretty predictable. Not quite sure how to solve this problem. Seems to be a pretty complex one for all. Any ideas....ya'll send 'em my way
  9. by   bergren
    As long as we go in sick, there will never be a solution to the sub problem.

    They will not solve the sub problem until it affects someone other than the nurse.
  10. by   Keepstanding
    Couldn't agree with you more. Teacher's always seem to have a sub provided for them.....I guess one day administration will realize. At least I hope they will. :uhoh21:
  11. by   sawbones
    There are nurses in public schools ? Not around here, the local politicians got rid of all but 2. Replaced them with snotty med techs who try to pass themselves off as nurses. Should of seen the look on their faces when I asked them a few Q's then refused to take my daughter out of school because they couldn't tell the difference between dandruff and head lice.
  12. by   Chilenurse

    in my school I`m alone at all. So nobody to help or substitute.

    2 years ago I was 4 weeks out (sick leave) because of a operation myself. That time the school ask me to look for somebody, what I did. It was a coleger from my old work in the hospital. She replaced me for 2 weeks. The other 2 weeks was nobody here.

    When I`m sick now, no Nurse at school!!!

    Since 2 years I get all infects we can get. Im really embaresed, because it`s pretty often.
    But now, with 42 years, I realiced that I have to take care about my self to. So if I have to stay home I do!!!

    Here in Germany the health system is different then in the States. We do not have just a certain days of sick leave. Can be any number of days, but always after 3 days we need to bring the medical certificate from the doc.
    And if you are a mother, you have 4 days sick leave for each child with any trouble. Beside that you can take 10 more days (if child under 14 years), but then the salary is less, but you get it back from you health insurance.
    Both cases just if both parents work.

    So, I guess not big different between the countries with this subject!

    Greetings from Frankfurt
  13. by   Keepstanding
    Thanks Chile Nurse,
    Yes it seems that this problem has no boundries as to what country we are in. It is always good to hear from you !:chuckle

    God Bless !

    LPN 90
  14. by   nurturing_angel
    I tried to be a school nurse sub once. First day I was to be trained I arrived to find out that the nurse was out sick and I was stuck. I should have just left but the office staff begged me to stay saying that they would do the meds, etc. and I only needed to be there for emergencies and sick kids that presented to the office. I ended up doing it all and I was terrified all day. I never went back! I still have a interest in school nursing but am reluctant to try to train again.