Woo hoo!

I made it to winter break! Time for two weeks of R&R and sweatpants! And, being very thankful I don't work at this school: California high school to be tested for tuberculosis.


I smell a scam

The principal at the Institution stormed into my office yesterday declaring, "We have a situation." Turns out a student was injured in August on the playground. At the time, she said it was an accident, but has now changed her story to saying that someone did it to her. Unfortunately for the school, no one filled out an accident report when it happened (probably because it was pretty minor, and the student said it wasn't intentional). Well, four months later, the family has come to the school complaining that she is still suffering pain from that injury at school in August, she is seeing specialists all over the place for her condition, and there's an issue with insurance...how convenient. It hasn't happened yet, but we're quite sure they're preparing to sue for health care coverage for this leg pain. 

I was getting awfully suspicious listening as the principal related this story. I though it was odd that it took four months for them to report the injury to the school; then even more suspicious that the timing coincides with them having some sort of vague insurance/financial issue. Unfortunately for them, we also have on record a doctor's note from two years ago stating that the student has chronic pain due to a leg length discrepancy...I don't think they know that we have that. 

This wouldn't be the first time I saw a family using their child deceitfully to get what they wanted, but every time, I just have pity for the student. 


Kids got a new pair of shoes

Every year at this time, the local hospital donates pretty generously to one of my lower-income schools. Today, I got to see a bunch of kindergartners with beat up shoes be handed a gift bag with a new pair picked especially for them. Their teachers had nominated these students in particular for needing a new pair, and while I wish parents would step up and maybe postpone some cigarette and alcohol purchases in order to meet their children's needs, at least someone is watching over them. Also, watching twenty five-year-olds march down the hall in a surprise brand new pair of shoes is adorable.


Last week

It's been a disheartening couple of weeks (and months) in my district. One nurse is on paid administrative leave following...an incident...our LVN that usually fills in for diabetics when people are sick has been out for surgery, another nurse quit effective this week...In the meantime, the need for us has increased: more diabetics are spread around our schools, and we're spread so thin that for one of us to take a day off, there's a serious amount of time spent orchestrating diabetic coverage.

Following the board's decision to continue to require licensed personnel to administer insulin, as opposed to the state's ruling that offered volunteers may do so, I've been thinking the solution to our shortage is obvious: hire cheaper nurses.

I was right. Last week started Monday morning with someone commenting that I have the pregnant lady waddle (not a compliment at any point in pregnancy, but at 24 weeks, I was insulted), and ended on Thursday with a call from the coordinator: we will indeed be being replaced, slowly, by LVNs. There will be able to be more of those than there are RNs, and there won't be room for all of us to stay as "LVN supervisors" as she put it. No one is getting laid off just yet, but with my preliminary credential expiring at the end of next school year (and needing a year or two of schooling to complete the requirements for a permanent credential), the unspoken conclusion was that I probably shouldn't bother completing such a thing. There won't be room for me here in a couple of years anyway.

<Sigh.> I suppose I should be more concerned about my career long-term, but instead, I'm just getting more excited by the day to meet the baby kicking my bladder.



This website invited high school students to upload pictures of their school lunches. I browsed enough to get the gist: we feed our children junk food, and the kids don't even like it! I've seen it myself: the garbage cans in the cafeteria are grossly filled with food every day.  



I was out on my diabetic rounds and returned to a request from the secretary to check on a student who had been complaining of difficulty breathing while I was out, and a note that mom wanted me to follow up with her once I checked on her son. 

His lungs and heart all sounded good by the time I saw him, but with the sudden turn to cold weather, I wasn't about to rule out the potential of asthma for him, particularly as he described the problem popping up during recess. 

I called his mom, who answered the phone sounding totally bored with me before I even began. I reported that by the time I listened to him, an hour after he'd first complained, all was clear. I launched into more detail that even though they may have been clear then, after an hour of rest, his lungs may actually be having a problem in this chilly weather. Her monotone response: "Well, if he has a problem, the school can transport him to the hospital."