New school nurse...bummed out already

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BSNbeauty, BSN, RN

1,939 Posts

Sorry, OP. I would advise you to hang in there, but it is obvious that your heart isn't into this job. School nurses are "Real nurses" too, don't ever forget that. Actually school nurses must have excellent assessment skills and sound judgement. In places like LTC and hospital jobs there is always another nurse there to bounce ideas off of, this in not so in school nursing.

Good luck to you. As a school nurse I forgive your previous comment, I know you were venting out of frustration.

elprup, BSN, RN

1,005 Posts

Sadly I had to abandon the school nurse ship too. I was just not cut out to manage 5 schools plus 2 more (because the other nurse left after 1 month) and try to learn it all on my own while not feeling like I was grounded anywhere. Most schools I did not have an office, but "a space". I feel like a failure, but know there is something out there better. There has to be!


192 Posts

I agree that school nursing is Real Nursing. I've been sub nursing this fall. I really enjoy it compared to LTC. Unfortunately, the pay isn't great, so I will end up back in LTC at least on the weekends once I find a position. I find that school nursing is a great opportunity to practice assessment skills and multi-tasking. Some days are easier than others. But, then there are the 'barf patrol' days!!! In general, I like the kids better in elementary school because they are more polite. The junior high kids are really rude at the one school I have been to. Haven't done high school yet. It's basically clinic work, not ER work. I get to review my med/surg and peds because I sub at all the schools and see many different situations. Also, learning to count carbs and handle diabetes care for kids is different than for LTC, so that was important to learn as well as all the different types of blood monitoring equipment!!! I went to one school that had 8 seizure students, and they called me to two different emergent situations in a hurry that day- while my office was full of other stuff (kids with lice, vomiting, on child abuse case...) it was definitely anxiety producing situation. But, I think I could handle it now.

For me, the hardest part of being a full time school nurse will be the M-F daytime work. I have other family issues I deal with. But, on the flip side, off every weekend, every holiday, all summer. I am seriously considering throwing my application out there for full time work.


76 Posts

I wouldn't go as far as saying that school nursing is not real nursing, but I understand the frustration. I've only been a school nurse for coming up 6 months, but I can definitely see the importance of having a nurse in the school. It often feels like you're doing nothing but paperwork, but for some of these students, you're the only medical provider they ever see. Being a school nurse also brings a lot of comfort to parents, especially those with children who have major health problems. I have found myself in situations where I have to prioritize because I have so many students coming in. I've also had my fair share of referrals out to the doctor because of some pretty serious injuries. I have 7 schools that I visit in only 30 hours a week, meaning that the secretaries have to do most of the work. They are life savers!!! Become very friendly with the secretaries and learn what kind of things they want to see. I have some schools that only send home kids when they have seen the vomit and others who just know who the regulars are and who never comes to the office claiming to be sick. It's real nursing where you use real nursing skills; there is just a little more time in between each skill used sometimes. Think more positive and take the time you have to teach the kids preventative care like hand washing, while in your office. I also find that I really enjoying teaching health related classes and the teachers jump at the opportunity when you let them know you would like to. You're purpose is preventative measures and first aid/emergency. Keeping kids healthy!


41 Posts

Specializes in pediatric/school nursing.

ouch..a real nursing job? I am an LPN as well and just started working as a school nurse in a building with almost 700 students. Its crazy hectic at times and calm at others. we have our frequent fliers, our liars, and such. I love every stinkin crazy moment of it all. So much so I am really contemplating going back to school to get my RN so I can have my own school and not have to work with another nurse.

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