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School nurse advice

(8 Posts)
hemel07 Thu 30-Jul-15 20:36:47

Hi, not sure where to post this so thought I'd try here. I'm a paediatric nurse currently trying to weigh up the pros and cons of school nursing versus shift work. At the moment I work long shifts (2 per week) in a job I enjoy well enough, but am really tempted by the prospect of term time only work. Working nights and weekends are taking their toll.....Is term time working all its cracked up to be? And are the school nurses you see coming into your schools happy with their jobs???

Happy36 Thu 30-Jul-15 22:46:32

We have a school nurse at our school. There are approximately 1,800 students aged 2 to 18 including approximately 80 boarders aged 12 to 18. The nurse works from 09:15 until 17:30 and presumably has some breaks during that time. Our previous nurse retired last summer. From September 2014 to June 2015 we have got through three more nurses, each of them has resigned citing the huge workload as the reason for leaving. Our latest nurse, who lasted the longest, seemed very cheerful and was excellent at her job (as were all of the previous ones), but boy did she work hard!

From a non-nurse´s point of view, there´s no controlling when students (or teachers) will need medical care so your workload is potentially unlimited. Contractually I think it is important to ensure that you and your employer have the same understanding of how much work you are expected to do.

hemel07 Fri 31-Jul-15 21:35:03

Thankyou for your response. The job I'm looking at is with a team of school nurses that visits schools, primary and secondary, so not dealing with emergencies or illness as such, more sex ed and safe guarding type things. I think being the onsite nurse for an entire school must be really hard!

HippyChickMama Fri 31-Jul-15 21:40:18

I am a nurse and worked as a school nurse for a while. Most school nurse posts these days are all year round and not term time only. I found it wasn't for me, having come from a v acute setting I was bored by it tbh. Also, having a toddler, childcare cost me a fortune whereas working in a hospital I can work weekends while dh is home.

redautumnleaves Sat 01-Aug-15 09:09:34

Hemel07 - have you done the SCPHN (school Nurse) course? You need to complete this additional qualification before you can work as a school nurse. And it is also very hard work even though it is mostly term time working. Very heavy caseloads with loads of child protection.

Pud2 Sat 01-Aug-15 20:33:06

I don't think school nurses actually do much 'nursing'. You would be assigned to a number of schools and, as has been said before, a huge amount of your time would be spent on safeguarding. This involves attending numerous TAC (Team Around the Child) meetings and child protection conferences as well as liaising with GPs, police and social services. In addition, you may offer support to some families and do checks such as height and weight. You may also do talks to parents, staff and children about various common health issues.

ManicPixieDream Sat 01-Aug-15 20:45:56

Yes, it is mostly child protection and vaccinations that school nursing team do these days. Not much health promotion. The school nurses I know are very busy and can't dedicate the time they want to get to know families.

I'm not a school nurse but I am a qualified nurse employed by a school. I work term time but the school nurses are full time. I love my job. The school nurses I see are not quite as happy with their lot. There are big changes happening within the service though which may improve things (or not. )

hemel07 Sat 01-Aug-15 21:31:57

Thankyou all. This particular job is term time only, hence the attraction, I know most of them aren't nowadays. The closing dates Tuesday so will give it a little further thought.

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