Hate Working as a School Nurse

  1. Dear Nurse Beth,

    I am confused on which career path to take. I am currently working as a school nurse and my only dislike regarding this job is the down time. I worked in a nursing home for 6 years and enjoyed my job due to staying busy. I had no choice but to leave the nursing home and find a job that would work around my children's school schedule. Which is the reason I picked to work as a school nurse. I enjoy helping needy children, educating them and working with the mental health.

    I just recently got my AS degree and were planning on advancing towards Human Services but my current school discontinued this course and I have chosen to take up a BS in Health and Administration. The problem is that I am confused on what jobs or career path to take with being an LPN? I can't work in the hospital as a nurse, advance towards my RN or work in the nursing home due to my children school schedule. Also, I hate working as a school nurse due to my down time the entire shift. Can you help me determine which career path would be best for me?

    Dear Hate Working as a School Nurse,

    Are you sure you want to continue in nursing?

    If you want to continue in nursing, decide if you want to get your RN or not. If you decide to get your RN, getting a degree in Health Administration is not a direct path. Just go for your RN.

    If you decide to remain an LPN, the options are more limited, and include sub acute, skilled nursing, to name a few. These are all shift work, as you know. Holding a degree in Health Administration while working as an LPN is not likely to greatly change your options.

    Maybe you should consider something entirely different, such as teaching. That way you could work with children, which you like, there will not be much down time,
    and you can be on the same schedule as your children.

    Best wishes,

    Nurse Beth

    Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!
  2. Visit Nurse Beth profile page

    About Nurse Beth, MSN, RN

    Joined: Mar '07; Posts: 1,405; Likes: 4,209


  3. by   peacockblue
    If school nursing interests you, you may choose to get your RN and whatever school nurse certification your state requires. Depending on where you are, this may give you less down time as you will be responsible for writing 504 plans, sitting in on IEP meetings, covering more than one school, scheduling dental and physical exams and doing screenings.next week, I'll be speaking to the parents of the incoming kindergarten kids and shortly after that, I will be doing kindergarten orientation in the elementary schools I cover. It's always something different. Our school recently opened a food pantry and I'm involved with the running of that. School nursing isn't for everyone and it is usually a slower pace than acute care. After 20years of acute care, I love the pace. Not saying this is the job for you but just throwing out some ideas.
  4. by   feelix
    You can apply to a different school where the nurse has no breathing time. Try and find an inner city school where kids have no access to health care. You will find your shift start half an hour before school as you will be responding to kids falling into open gutters and nosebleeds of kids from other schools on school buses.
    You will see about 30 kids on your shift and will be dressing wounds from yesterday as mom did not have a rag to tie the wound. You will be giving am medications as mom had no food to give with the meds. You will be tending to kids left for 3 hours in the nurses office due to high fever as mom is a front line worker who cannot get away from her job to pick up kids. You will also be babysitting kids who have peed in their pants and cannot go on the schoolbus as mom does not have spare clothes to send.
    Good luck.
  5. by   bluebonnetrn
    Yes, what Feelix said
    I am not even sure what to say to the description that the school nurse has too much down time.
    Not in my school....
    I think Feelix's description was much more accurate.
  6. by   scout mom
    I work as a school nurse in small town. Our grade school is Pre K-8. I am the only nurse for grade school and high school. I see at least 50 kids per day on average & am the only one to keep track of state mandates, any parent education, staff injuries or illnesses, etc... & yes, also the children in my office for hours because the parents can't (or won't) come to get them. I can't leave school for lunch and don't always get lunch. I LOVE the downtime when I actually get it!