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Staff Burnout

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My small, private school with two campuses prek-5 and 6-12, has been in-person since august. We've only had 2 confirmed positives, each time sending ~35 into quarantine for 2 wks. 

Although we've managed really well throughout this pandemic, I HATE being here - I think it's unfair to teachers and an incredible burden on me and the administration to keep this running.

Teachers are now cleaning their own rooms several times per day, during lunch and breaks they are supervising kids to keep them compliant with all the rules, etc. Basically they are SO burned out. They have been asking me if it's possible to not come back after Thanksgiving break and go remote the rest of the year.

I know it's a big ask but I feel compelled by my colleagues and obligated by my duty to keep everyone safe to at least float the idea to our Leadership Team. 

So I'm going to write an email asking to consider going remote. I'd also like to offer some morale boosters for staff - anyone have any ideas? PTO brought a coffee truck last week, which was nice... something like that?

SchoolNurseK, BSN, RN

Specializes in Geriatric Home Health, High School Nurse. Has 19 years experience.

I just put together a "Favorite Things" binder that is kept in the front office and went out virtually to the parents.  Each teacher filled out a questionnaire about their favorite things (salty snack, sweet snack, place to shop, etc..) so that parents could thank them. The teachers loved it and I've seen some things rolling in for them.  I am still waiting for one of my favorite things to appear, but that's another story. 😉 

26 minutes ago, SchoolNurseK said:

I just put together a "Favorite Things" binder that is kept in the front office and went out virtually to the parents.  Each teacher filled out a questionnaire about their favorite things (salty snack, sweet snack, place to shop, etc..) so that parents could thank them. The teachers loved it and I've seen some things rolling in for them.  I am still waiting for one of my favorite things to appear, but that's another story. 😉 

I know... there is a very bitter part of me that is wondering if anyone is thinking about how the NURSE is faring during all this.... 

JenTheSchoolRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in School nursing.

2 hours ago, jnemartin said:

I know... there is a very bitter part of me that is wondering if anyone is thinking about how the NURSE is faring during all this.... 

We aren't a teacher, so...

But I will say this. Remote also just sucks a lot. So much planning. So much burnout. So much blend of home and work life to the point where you are answering email at 9 PM. We are struggling with this in full remote mode as well.

It all sucks. Which isn't helpful at all to say, I know. I actually told admin that what is most appreciated is instead of mandatory PD time on Monday afternoon (we have a half day of remote classes every Monday), maybe every other Monday afternoon could just "rest" time that was also modeled by admin. All of us take that time for us, no email, no classes, nothing. 

Bulldogs, CNA, EMT-B

Has 4 years experience.

I ran on my lunch break 2 miles in 27 minutes that tells me I was moving must be the stress.  but I sure needed to be out doors and away from everyone!  

21 hours ago, JenTheSchoolRN said:

We aren't a teacher, so...

But I will say this. Remote also just sucks a lot. So much planning. So much burnout. So much blend of home and work life to the point where you are answering email at 9 PM. We are struggling with this in full remote mode as well.

It all sucks. Which isn't helpful at all to say, I know. I actually told admin that what is most appreciated is instead of mandatory PD time on Monday afternoon (we have a half day of remote classes every Monday), maybe every other Monday afternoon could just "rest" time that was also modeled by admin. All of us take that time for us, no email, no classes, nothing. 

We have a half day today, and this afternoon is filled with PD... that's actually a major force behind some of the burnout - all the teachers are complaining/commiserating to me that it's just ridiculous that admin has filled every last second of our time. It's interesting to hear this is a common theme at other schools, too

33 minutes ago, jnemartin said:

We have a half day today, and this afternoon is filled with PD... that's actually a major force behind some of the burnout - all the teachers are complaining/commiserating to me that it's just ridiculous that admin has filled every last second of our time. It's interesting to hear this is a common theme at other schools, too

Our teachers are overscheduled too. It seems like every minute is filled with meetings, zoom calls, webinars... It's too much. We are in person 4 days a week with a virtual day on Wednesday. There's a lot of emotional labor this year. 

CommunityRNBSN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Community health. Has 3 years experience.

I wanted to second the “remote also sucks” refrain. I have several friends who are teachers who are doing remote. They are 100% considering retiring, moving away, etc, because of how brutal it is