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Applying for School Nurse Positions...Letters of Recommendation?

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by valeriecathleen valeriecathleen (Member) Member

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Applying for a school nurse position is like no other ball game I have ever played before! The application process seems geared toward teachers and most include a requirement for three letters of recommendation.

When I apply for jobs I like to keep it quiet. It bothers me to get other people involved and seems like such a lot to ask of someone. I'm certainly not going to ask my current boss to write one and my last 3 jobs don't exist any more (the companies have closed or been sold and I'm not sure where my old bosses are any more).

I got one from a nurse friend who "sort-of" supervised me at one time, one from a co-worker and another from the director of finance at my kids school who knows that I volunteer constantly to make our fund raisers a success.

My question is - does this seem like it is adequate? Is there someone else I SHOULD ask? Do they put a lot of weight in these letters?

Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeease pleeeeeeeeeeeeeease pleeeeeeeeeeeeeease let me land a new job!

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1,112 Posts; 10,890 Profile Views

"director of finance at my kids school who knows that I volunteer constantly to make our fund raisers a success"

That would be a very strong letter of reference. Someone who knows you and knows schools. That letter alone might be enough to get the job.

" one from a nurse friend who "sort-of" supervised me at one time, one from a co-worker "

These are not terrible, but not super strong. It will depend on how they write it.

What kind of volunteer groups are you with? Ones that deal with kids? Such as Girl Scouts or Boy Scouts? Teaching Sunday school? Organizers there could provide a letter.

Have you organized major events for your Church or a kids sports club? Ditto, the leadership in these groups would ahve crediblity.

What about your professional associations? Have you been on a committee or run for office? Colleagues there would be able to proovide strong recommendations.

Good luck - that letter from the finance director should seal the deal.

Search the archives here for how to handle the interview. Emphasize how you can work in teams and get along with others. Principals are looking for people who solve problems, take things off their plate without disrupting the team.

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1,112 Posts; 10,890 Profile Views

This is old but still salient.

It is about making the transition from acute care to school nursing: http://snp.homestead.com/ArticleMT.html

This application process is the first sign that "you are not in Kansas anymore". Schools are a completely different work setting and assumptions you have learned about work in an acute health care environment are different in schools.

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23 Posts; 1,194 Profile Views

Thanks Martha! I really appreciate your input and insight.

I have been a nurse for 27 years and worked in acute care for the first 10. Since that time I have moved "outta Kansas" into case management and most recently telephonic nursing. I really feel that having that under my belt has taught me that there is a very different world out there beyond the walls of a hospital.

I also have been a substitute school nurse in 3 districts for the past year. I really looked forward to the day in school whenever I got that early morning call (I think I put this sentence in my cover letter).

I am excited about the director of finance letter as she is very well spoken and I think she will know exactly what I need. The nurse who "sort-of" supervised me is actually now the Director of Operations (nursing supervisor) a for a major teaching hospital and coincidently, my best friend (LOL!). This morning she handed me a very strong letter that actually made me cry because it said such wonderful things about me. Her credentials are great and I think her letter can only help me.

I've asked 3 co-workers. One flat out said no, she didn't do well with these sorts of things (ok....), the second one wrote me a lukewarm letter and the third has had a time crunch at home and not been able to produce anything as of yet. I'm getting down to a deadline and may have to just send in the lukewarm one.

I really appreciate your taking the time to reply and will check the archives. Any information is good and I am hoping that something materializes soon!

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1,112 Posts; 10,890 Profile Views

You sound like you are in great shape.

"...One flat out said no,..." Thank goodness for that..... It is always worse if they agree and then procrastinate and then ultimately, don't do it. So bless her for being honest!!!

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