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denied FT job after subbing for school

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by mmallien mmallien, ASN (New) New

Is it common to be denied a FT job after being the main sub for the school system?  I am a fairly new nurse, but I have been the main substitute nurse for the schools in my county. This year a job came available and I just found out today that they selected someone else.  I have no hospital experience aside from my preceptorship, but I would have thought if they trusted me to sub at their schools that I would be just as qualified to work full time?  And out of times I subbed last year, I did a long term sub, that was over a month. 

k1p1ssk, BSN, RN

Specializes in pediatrics. Has 10 years experience.

I don't know how uncommon it is, to be honest, as SN jobs don't come up super often in the desirable districts in my area. If the district you were subbing in is desirable, then I wouldn't take it too personally. I was in a very similar situation - I had been subbing for over a year as well, with over a year's experience in outpatient peds as well as a concurrent position in a private school health center and got passed over for a FT SN position, simply due to years experience. They gave the job to a nurse who had 8 years in L&D experience, as I had only been a nurse for 4 years. The principal of the building I was applying to called me afterwards and said the interview committee literally could not decide between me and the other nurse who was a finalist and so they had to pass our resumes along to a completely different set of staff to make the decision blind. It literally came down experience and experience only. 

Do not let this discourage you, especially if you are really loving school nursing! Don't leave the district (this will show loyalty and committment), or see if you can find another position to fill out your resume!! I think in general, schools want to see nurses who are dedicated to the care and wellness of children, are organized and self-sufficient, and who are up to the task of handling emergencies. 

Personally, I ended up moving on to inpatient peds, and then developmental medicine, and subsequently have found what I hope will be my forever job (in year 3 ATM!).

GOOD LUCK!

Many times a person already present at a place of employment is passed over for a new position. This does not appear to be the norm however. You probably should consider what you can do to keep yourself from being considered part of the woodwork if that was the case. You also have a right to find out why you weren’t selected instead of someone else. Don’t let them brush you off on this, another sign of woodwork status.

Just curious.... since I don’t have a l of experience with the field, but experience would trump RN over LPN?it was probably many factors. I do think it was probably a close call, and the principal was very nice when she told me they selected someone else. I just thought I had a good shot since I volunteered with 3 out of the 4 hearing and vision screenings. And volunteering for registration day since they needed a RN signature, and all the days subbing at $60/day. It was more to get my foot in the door and to help the nurses, not for the pay.   I shouldn’t think about it to much, since it’s not going to change anything. 😌

scuba nurse, BSN, MSN, RN

Specializes in School Nursing, Pediatrics. Has 31 years experience.

That happened to me years ago, but you never know who you are up against. Don't take it personally. Something better will come along...it did for me.

k1p1ssk, BSN, RN

Specializes in pediatrics. Has 10 years experience.

1 hour ago, mmallien said:

Just curious.... since I don’t have a l of experience with the field, but experience would trump RN over LPN?it was probably many factors. I do think it was probably a close call, and the principal was very nice when she told me they selected someone else. I just thought I had a good shot since I volunteered with 3 out of the 4 hearing and vision screenings. And volunteering for registration day since they needed a RN signature, and all the days subbing at $60/day. It was more to get my foot in the door and to help the nurses, not for the pay.   I shouldn’t think about it to much, since it’s not going to change anything. 😌

I'm assuming the person who got the job is an LPN and you are an RN. And in some cases, yes - If an LPN has more years experience, they can justify it with a pay difference. RNs command greater pay and even as a newer RN, the pay may be greater than that of a more seasoned LPN. Again, don't worry too much about it! Keep working and don't let this one situation sour your hopes for becoming a SN.  THough, with all that said, it sounds like you gave them a lot (volunteering, etc.); Don't let them take too much advantage of you!

Happened to me also.  Had been subbing for a district off/on for about 6 months - an opening had come up in one of the elementary schools and I interviewed but didn't get the job.  The thing that got me irritated was when the principal called to tell me they decided to go with someone else she had the balls to ask if I would be interested in a "Long Term sub" position since the new nurse she just hired couldn't start for 8 weeks!  I was like ummm no thanks - bye!  

Just hang in there - keep subbing in the district if you like it - something will eventually open up. Good Luck!

amoLucia

Specializes in LTC.

Many school nurse positions are on par with teacher positions. In such facilities, there prob are specific eligibility requirements for license, educ and exp. And since they are prob Civil Service and poss covered under a union contract, they may just be plain, old NON-negotiable. In order for the position to be filled per R&Rs, there is no room to deviate. That's just Civil Service and unions.

Now sometimes, substitutes CAN BE hired, with the understanding and expectation that it will be on a temporary basis. This happened to me when I was a temporary clinical instructor in a hospital SON diploma program. The National League for Nursing accreditation required that permanent appointed faculty/instructors be MSN degree prepared. But in a sudden pinch emergency situation (like our school was in), I could be hired (I WAS working on my MSN thesis). But I was only hired for the one semester, no more.

So it's most likely NOT YOU. Just a quirk in the system. And you prob could be 'bumped' if an appropriately qualified candidate were to apply while you were subbing.

I know, it doesn't make for happy 'subs', but afterall, that's what we were doing - 'subbing'.

 

Jedrnurse, BSN, RN

Specializes in school nurse. Has 29 years experience.

On 9/26/2020 at 5:57 PM, amoLucia said:

Many school nurse positions are on par with teacher positions. In such facilities, there prob are specific eligibility requirements for license, educ and exp. And since they are prob Civil Service and poss covered under a union contract, they may just be plain, old NON-negotiable. In order for the position to be filled per R&Rs, there is no room to deviate. That's just Civil Service and unions.

Now sometimes, substitutes CAN BE hired, with the understanding and expectation that it will be on a temporary basis. This happened to me when I was a temporary clinical instructor in a hospital SON diploma program. The National League for Nursing accreditation required that permanent appointed faculty/instructors be MSN degree prepared. But in a sudden pinch emergency situation (like our school was in), I could be hired (I WAS working on my MSN thesis). But I was only hired for the one semester, no more.

So it's most likely NOT YOU. Just a quirk in the system. And you prob could be 'bumped' if an appropriately qualified candidate were to apply while you were subbing.

I know, it doesn't make for happy 'subs', but afterall, that's what we were doing - 'subbing'.

 

Yeah. In my state, for example, an RN with an ASN or diploma could be a sub but couldn't be hired into a regular school nurse position.

Thank you for your responses.  All the nurses except for the head nurse are LPN's.  I don't think it was my credentials.  Especially since the head nurse was the one who wanted me to apply. She also let me know if it was up to her I would have been hired. But it is selected by each school. Oh, well.  I will be applying for another opening next year when the current nurse retires, that happened to be the school I did the long term sub. I have a good relationship with the staff there. I will also be volunteering at my pediatricians office in the meantime to add to my experience, just so this doesn't happen again. The position was at the high school which had never had a nurse before, so I never got to sub at the school or meet anyone.  It might be they had someone in mind before even going though the interviews. Try, try, try again, right?  

Jedrnurse, BSN, RN

Specializes in school nurse. Has 29 years experience.

First time the high school has had a nurse? Wow. How many students do they have?

ruby_jane, BSN, RN

Specializes in ICU/community health/school nursing. Has 12 years experience.

49 minutes ago, mmallien said:

Thank you for your responses.  All the nurses except for the head nurse are LPN's.  I don't think it was my credentials.  Especially since the head nurse was the one who wanted me to apply. She also let me know if it was up to her I would have been hired. But it is selected by each school. Oh, well.  I will be applying for another opening next year when the current nurse retires, that happened to be the school I did the long term sub. I have a good relationship with the staff there. I will also be volunteering at my pediatricians office in the meantime to add to my experience, just so this doesn't happen again. The position was at the high school which had never had a nurse before, so I never got to sub at the school or meet anyone.  It might be they had someone in mind before even going though the interviews. Try, try, try again, right?  

My first nursing interview was at a school where the principal plainly wanted/needed a nurse who was Black and/or Hispanic and/or bilingual. I am none of those things. But that was the NEED and it's the principal's show. I am of the belief that things don't happen for a reason. Good attitude - try again later!!

Jedrnurse, BSN, RN

Specializes in school nurse. Has 29 years experience.

35 minutes ago, ruby_jane said:

My first nursing interview was at a school where the principal plainly wanted/needed a nurse who was Black and/or Hispanic and/or bilingual. I am none of those things. But that was the NEED and it's the principal's show. I am of the belief that things don't happen for a reason. Good attitude - try again later!!

How bluntly did the principal inform you of this? I mean, I truly get the need for more POC staff in schools, but it's a legal minefield to not hire someone on the basis of race...

amoLucia

Specializes in LTC.

1 hour ago, ruby_jane said:

My first nursing interview was at a school where the principal plainly wanted/needed a nurse who was Black and/or Hispanic and/or bilingual. I am none of those things. But that was the NEED and it's the principal's show. I am of the belief that things don't happen for a reason. Good attitude - try again later!!

I'm truly, truly  NOT sure about this, but could that position have been MANDATED by EEO dictate??? Like some quota needed based on the locale and population demographics?

ruby_jane, BSN, RN

Specializes in ICU/community health/school nursing. Has 12 years experience.

1 hour ago, Jedrnurse said:

How bluntly did the principal inform you of this? I mean, I truly get the need for more POC staff in schools, but it's a legal minefield to not hire someone on the basis of race...

She didn't. Just a vibe I got. :)

Jedrnurse, BSN, RN

Specializes in school nurse. Has 29 years experience.

1 minute ago, ruby_jane said:

She didn't. Just a vibe I got. 🙂

I understand. I imagine that the bilingual issue could be outwardly discussed as a criterion. Learning Spanish is definitely on my bucket list; I've learned the hard way about the limitations of Google Translate.

ruby_jane, BSN, RN

Specializes in ICU/community health/school nursing. Has 12 years experience.

8 minutes ago, amoLucia said:

I'm truly, truly  NOT sure about this, but could that position have been MANDATED by EEO dictate??? Like some quota needed based on the locale and population demographics?

No position can be mandated that way. Spanish-speaking may be listed as a preferred (and you may get extra points if you do). Look - the principal knows her demographics. End of story.  If offered the choice of three people, all other things being equal and one is a Black Latina who is fluent in Spanish - I'd hire her! The point I was trying to make is that in many districts the hiring of a nurse is completely up to the principal.