Need to Vent - page 2

I don't see much activity on this board, but there must be some nursing educators/instructors out there. We have a situation at the school I teach for. One of the students is very incompetant. She... Read More

  1. by   Y2KRN

    It is nice to hear the other side of the story. Were I went to school they eliminated one half of our class!! There were no grades for clinical performance, you passed or you failed. It did seem in some circumstances that if the instructor didn't like you, that was it you were done. Others, needed to go. But all of them?

    Anyway nice to see a different perspective!!

  2. by   ceecel.dee
    We have seen a steady decline in the performance of new grads in our area and have even made phone calls to the two closest schools (where we get most of our new hires) about the decline.

    The educators actually apologize and act appreciative for the feedback, but no changes seen.

    Integrity is called for! Please bring others onto the bandwagon! Set your standards and don't graduate those that don't pass muster! Only 65% of my class passed, and no, it didn't seem fair at the time, but I sure appreciate it now! A little anxiety is a great motivator to study an extra hour or two, or practice that sterile technique one more time!

    Hang in there! We wish there were clone's of you in all schools!
  3. by   jtfreel
    My school (fortunately) had a student which taught us numerous valuable lessons even though the process was incredibly painful. She was an academic 4.0 with no compassion, extreme feelings of entitlement, poor critical thinking skills, very manipulative, and the list went on and on. An instructor's nightmare-and a learning opportunity.

    The faculty understood that Administration would support the student (rightfully so) unless we had objective, unemotional,timely, and well documented clinical evaluations. The hardest part of this process was to de-emotionalize the situation. Once that was accomplished, the rest became easy by comparison. Result: the student did not graduate. She filed an appeal (she had the right to do so). Administration reviewed all documentation and supported the faculty. She threatened to get a lawyer (again, her right). She made several other threats but the decision remained unchanged.

    Lessons learned: 1. We, the faculty, wasted a lot of time and energy reacting emotionally. 2. When we stops reacting...we were able to act. 3. One bad student should not be given more attention or "power" than the other 99 who are working to achieve personal, program and professional goals.

    Just a thought.
  4. by   det01
    I am a nursing student but I have also seen things through the eyes of a professor. My husband taught college classes for a while. He was not a nursing instructor, but he still had the same sort of problems. He saw students cheat, he even caught one that took a paper off the internet!!!! He called the students on it, but little was done about it. I saw how sad and frustrated he was. Some of the students were graduating due to "test taking skills" and he knew they should not be working yet, that it was going to be a disaster. He taught upper division classes and they were already hopeless by the time they got there.

    I have also seen it in my classes. Some of the students study a few minutes, fail the test and then blame the teacher. I hear, he just does not like me, he can't teach, all kinds of things. Some of them even talk back to the teacher in class!! They are so disrespectful. Some don't event hink being in class or getting there on time is a necesssity. (This is occuring in prereqs at a college other than the nursing school i will attending the fall). I feel bad for the teachers and if they fail the students who do badly and have bad attitudes then I salute them. There are students I have been in class with that if they ended up being anyone I loved's nurse, I would immediatly request someone else. I try not to be judgemental, but some never came to class and could never understand why type O blood can not take any other blood but can be given to other people! They even tried to argue that you could give type O other types. YIKes! Having nurses who are rude and irresponsible will not help the shortage, it will only create another problem.

    Sorry this was so long. Hang in there. There are students who appreciate all you do for us!!!!
    Last edit by det01 on Jul 27, '02
  5. by   epg_pei
    When I hear the word "troublemaker" I start taking everything else I hear with a block of salt. Specific complaints are one thing, the "I don't like your attitude" line is something entirely different.
  6. by   2banurse
    Deciding to return to school in my thirties, I found myself more observant of the instructor-pupil relationship. I have a lot of respect for the teachers at my community college. What I have seen that it is usually the younger students that are causing the disruptions and rudeness in class. I think that when you return to school after a hiatus, you have a stronger direction and willingness to learn.

    I just want all nursing instructors to know that there are many students who do appreciate the time and effort that you give to your classes.

  7. by   kimmicoobug
    Maybe I am just naive, but I don't think we have had this kind of problem at our school. For us, there is just the cattiness and backbiting between the students. I know that there are students who complain about this teacher or that, but for the most part we just grumble. I have even complained in a joking around manner to my favorite instructor that I was going to be studying for his test. This instructor actually cares and he scheduled a review for his test on his own time. We greatly appreciated it. Usually the students who have bad attitudes in our class drop, or fail out. Do they think they are dropping out to prove a point, or to do everyone a favor. Sometimes, I wonder this.

    Interesting to hear an instructor talk. I really don't feel we have this problem, although it probably exists with at least one student in a class of 46. I just hope that I am not one of those students that all the instructors are worried about.
  8. by   kmaryniak
    I had the priviledge for teaching at a local college in Canada, clinical med/surg. I was very fortunate that the groups of students I had were great. They respected me, and I respected them. I also worked part time for another college, which had a nursing refresher program. I agreed to an assignment, which really blind-sided me. I only had to spend a week with a student, in a nursing home, to evaluate her clinical skills. She was a disaster! She had no empathy, no critical thinking, no sense of asepsis (I mean, wash your hands!!), the list went on and on. The kicker was that she was also paranoid, and, after working psychiatry for 3 years, I can spot mania a mile away. She was unsafe, verbal abused me, and was physically threatening. Needless to say, I failed her. I also had to go through 3 appeals, as of course, she said I was wrong. It was all part of the great conspiracy to keep her from getting her license. I'm glad that I took notes (about 20 pages of them), detailing everything she said and did that was either dangerous, inappropriate, or just plain stupid. I really felt that I was on trial, and that's too bad. There was support from my colleagues, but it still was an experience that I wouldn't want to relive. Zumalong, you and your colleagues hang tough! Make sure there is plenty of documentation to support the situation. And, even though there is a lot of "bull pucky" that can go along with it, I still love to teach. If we can develop a passion for nursing, even among few, then it is worth it. I agree, though, that it can be scary some of the nurses that we release into the wild.
    I guess I went to an old school because if you even flinched and your instructor didnt like it you were out. Being booted out hung over our head at every possible way. It worked like a charm if there was someone that didnt cut the mustard they were out, I recall someone taking something to the Head of the Nursing school but I dont recall seeing her after that. Isnt part of your job as an instructor is to weed people like this, if your unable to weed them isnt that destroying the first line of defense in elimintaing process and only allowing the best of the best to contiue on? I wouldnt want anyone that you felt uncomfortable with and incapable of thier job on my shift and I certainly wouldnt want them taking care of a family member. Do they think they will be able to bully thier way into the nursing world? Will it be another reason why a floor looses nurses because of the one nurse who is worthless, but bullies others into doing thier job.
    Yes we are in a nursing shortage but I dont want to fill in the gaps with people who can not understand the basic fundamentals and the chain of command. I need a well rounded nurse that understands every reason and rationele of why and who and what to do.
    Just my thoughts
  10. by   JNJ
    Kimmy2, I relate to your story. Similar issues with a student of mine ended in the school taking out a restraining order against her on my behalf.

    Zoe - I think times have changed very quickly in education and instructors have so little power now. Some schools, especially in CA, are very limited in what preadmission criteria they can apply to students wishing to join a program, and the documentation required to 'fail' a student. I used to feel that the energy and paperwork required to fail (or at least ask a student to repeat) a class was out of proportion to the effort I spent on the students who just did what was asked of them, were appropriate, punctual and safe.

    I have taught in both Europe and the USA in many different settings - an educational adage is that "10% of the students will take 90% of an educator's time." This is not reasonable, but it tends to occur, especially where educators are also nurses preparing students for the unusual role where the lives of others may be in the hands of a poor student if we let that situation continue. But students do bring lawyers (and other, not so diplomatic pressure!) to schools and educators and I found that schools cave in quickly under that sort of persuasion. I believe the graduation of inappropriate nursing students is rife and pervasive.

    I have noted that facilities are complaining about the quality of new graduates. But I have long believed that a practice probation period should be a necessary part of a nursing education; the type where peer RNs mentor and review performance and a fully fledged professional qualification is not granted until real clinical competence is demonstrated. While the BRNs allow one clinical teacher to have 12 nursing students, the odd manipulative/poor one will always slip through the clinical net. The clinicals are so short (time approved by the BRNs) that it is very difficult for a clinical teacher to document and prove below standard performance, counsel, allow time for improvement and demonstrate that this was not achieved - all required for a failing grade.

    One other issue is the quality of some teachers; Europe requires a teaching degree and wide and deep nursing experience before an RN may teach nursing. The USA does not require a teaching degree or background in education. Certainly, a background in educational theory and practice provides a firm framework for dealing with the inappropriate student. New teachers do not have these skills.

    The answer may lie in lobbying our Boards for higher standards, but as a consumer protection organization, they are unlikely to do that while nurses are in short supply.
  11. by   nursbee04
    I am in a class of about 100 and we walk the chalk. Most of the people with bad attitudes dropped long ago. I really can't believe that a student could get away with that kind of attitude & behavior!! I worked very hard to get into my school and wouldn't dream of acting like that -- i mean, i don't always agree with my instructors, but they are a whole heckofa lot wiser than I am and I've got a LOT to learn from them (if i ever become just HALF as good of a nurse as my clinical instructor is, then I will consider myself a success!) I feel that if there is one time in your life to shut up, listen and learn, nursing school is it. And besides, I've got the kind of instructors that you can joke around with, but who can also put the fear of God into you with just one look ( )

    Sorry you are having to put up w that. Good luck with the situation.
    Last edit by nursbee04 on Jan 5, '03
  12. by   Mandylpn
    Originally posted by zumalong
    Update---the 3 students involved tried to have a greivance meeting against the instructor. They did not follow chain of command, so it has not gone anywhere yet.

    What is so difficult is this one dangerous trouble maker is going to be allowed to graduate. We were told to treat her with kid gloves and make sure if we watch her in clinical, that we don't go into her patient's room without another witness!!! Can you believe this garbage.

    I went into nursing because I love helping others. I still worry whenever I leave the unit that I forgot something and inadvertantly harmed a patient. When I began teaching, I tried to bring my accountability to my students. But some of these students coming through have no sensitivity, accountability, or respect for anyone. It is very scary.

    All I can say is that the agencies that are hiring new grads really should contact the instructors to see what exactly they are hiring. This is one student I will never give a reference to, or even sign her final evaluation--because this says I feel she is competant to be a nurse.

    Watch your loved ones when they are sick!!!!
    I am a student and in defense this would never roll at my school "treat with kid gloves", are you kidding? The rules are the rules and they apply to all. My teachers are tough, and that's the way I want them to be, make me learn it the right way. I have had instructors who made me cry, but I still respect them. It is nice to read an instructor's point of view.
  13. by   infinity
    Stay the course!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    As a practicing RN, I can't tell you how embarassed I am to see what type of grads are out there on the floors attempting to care for patients.
    Skills should be taught in manners, giving and accepting criticism, and communication--maybe before actual nursing theory!!
    I have wondered how some of these Grads got through school and now I know: instructors who have decided to pass them to help the nursing shortage. Please stop helping us!!!!!!!!!!!! You certainly aren't thinking of the welfare of all those patients relying on these new nurses!!
    We need nurses, but we need well-educated nurses. How can a person who has never been there determine they know more than the instructors?
    Give the students your best-and that would include your experience-the real world will knock some sense into them. I certainly hope your administration listens to you and not the students--
    You have my full support.