If you are a qualified school nurse looking for a job or a better employer, you need to prove to the interviewer that you can perform the school nursing role effectively. Below is a list of the 20 most common interview questions along with their answers to help you prepare adequately.
1. Why are You Interested in This Role?
The interviewer wants to know the reason as to why you want this job. Mention what made you apply for this position and what drives your service as a school nurse.
“Lately, I have been following your school and I’m aware of the efforts the school has made in supporting students to be healthy and well as they study. That has impacted their good performance. I know that the school maintains a good environment that supports learning and service delivery. In particular, I know you have a modern health facility that caters to the health needs of your staff and student. It is this good reputation that drives my desire to work in your school. With my skills and experience in nursing, I will perform this role effectively and as expected.”
2. What are the Roles of a School Nurse?
Here, the interviewer wants to hear whether you are conversant with your roles. Think quickly and mention several roles performed by a school nurse.
“The role of a school nurse is very essential when it comes to bridging education and healthcare. Founded on practice standards, the role of a school nurse includes advancing academic success by promoting and protecting student health and facilitating the optimal development of learners. It also involves providing care coordination, advocating for quality-centered care, and designing systems that help students to grow to develop their full potential. School nurses play a critical role in bridging health care and education. School nurses also assist parents and students to access health insurance.“
3. Describe Your Daily Routine as a School Nurse?
This question is asked to test your familiarity with how a typical day of a school nurse looks like. State several duties performed by school nurses on a daily basis.
“The daily routine of a school nurse involves conducting health assessment and providing first aid care, administering medication, monitoring medical administration, and performing and well as coordinating screening. Other duties include educating and training students and staff on healthy living and protecting themselves, assisting patients to access healthcare services, writing care plans, coordinating the care of patients with acute or chronic conditions, and offering assistance in the identification of learners with special needs.”
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4. Describe Briefly About Your Experience
The interviewer wants to ascertain whether you have the minimum experience required for this job. Mention the period you have served as a school nurse and the expertise you have gained.
“I have been in the school nursing role for five years. I have served as a school nurse in three different schools. I have been involved in offering a diverse range of services to students. In the course of my service, I have screened, diagnosed, and treated students with different kinds of health conditions. I have successfully helped to bridge healthcare and education in the schools I have served. I have attained the minimum experience that you are looking for. Based on the skills and expertise I’ve gained in the course of my service, I believe I’m the right candidate for this job. ”
5. What are the Qualities That a School Nurse Need to Be Successful?
The interviewer asks this question to assess your familiarity with the qualities of a good school nurse. Mention at least two qualities that school nurses need to be successful.
“The role of a nurse has its pressures and demands. But people who choose to become school nurses find it incredibly rewarding. To be successful, one needs to be caring, empathetic, adaptable, and hard working. A school nurse needs to be emotionally stable, a quick thinker particularly when emergency cases arise, a great communicator, have physical endurance, be a problem solver, have a sense of hope, and good record keeper.”
6. Share with Us Your Greatest Achievement
Here, the interviewer is interested in knowing what you consider to be your greatest accomplishment. Describe a work-related achievement you have attained.
“Last year, I won the Employee of the Year Award in my current workplace. I was recognized for my outstanding service to students. Dealing with students at times calls for a higher level of compassion. When they bruise their knee, students take that more seriously than adults. Treating them requires not only professional knowledge but also care and being sensitivity. This is because minor issues that may not even require medication may disturb them a lot and even affect their academic performance. I have proven to be highly skilled in handling such cases and that’s what I consider as my greatest achievement so far.”
7. What Kind of Strategies and Mindset is Required for This Role?
The interviewer wants to assess whether you have the right mindset for this role and your familiarity with the strategies a school nurse should apply. Mention two or three strategies and the attitude needed for this role.
“Effective communication is one of the important strategies for this role. Also, it is important to communicate comfortably with students of different ages. Good record keeping is a great way to ensure health records are stored properly and are easily retrieved when needed. Other strategies include upholding professionalism, being proactive in spotting health concerns among learners, and good time management. A school nurse should have a positive mindset, which includes being hopeful, compassionate, patient, understanding, and being a life-long learner.”
8. What Would You Do if Someone Criticized Your Service?
The interviewer asks this question to know how you respond to criticism. Show that you welcome criticism and respond positively.
“I don’t respond aggressively or negatively to criticism. I embrace both constructive and other forms of criticism. It helps me to learn my lesson and become a better school nurse. Also, I never get discouraged when people try to push me down.”
9. How Do You Stay Motivated in Your Work?
This question is asked to assess what you do to stay inspired to work. So, state two or three things you do to stay motivated.
“I’m a member of the nurses’ association in the country. We have social media groups where we connect and share various things about our profession. We also hold seminars from time to time to discuss issues arising in the profession. Through these, I get to learn a lot about what others are doing to become successful. I also get to share the issues I’m experiencing and I get solutions from others who have experienced the same in the past. Besides, I read a lot about new nursing approaches and strategies related to school nursing. The success of these methods at the workplace motivates me to continue making a difference in the workplace and the lives of students.”
10. Describe a Time When You Failed in This Role and The Lesson You Learnt?
The interviewer asks this question not to isolate you as a failure but to know whether you learn from your mistake. Describe one instance where you have failed and what you learned.
“When I was new to the school nursing practice, I diagnosed several students with a condition that required several months of treatment. I started administering medication and instructed the students to be reporting to me whenever their tablets got finished. They did so for one month but some never continued with full treatment. I failed to follow them up. After some time, they returned to me with more severe symptoms. The condition had even become resistant to the earlier medication. I learned to always follow up students because some may not see the need for undergoing full treatment particularly for conditions that take months to treat.”
11. Why Do You Feel You are The Most Suited for This Role?
Here, the interview manager seeks to know what makes you stand out from the crowd. State two or three things that makes the best candidate for this job.
“I have attained the minimum education requirement and experience required for this job. Over the years, I have been very committed to my roles and responsibilities. I have met my targets and exceeded others. Also, I have a passion for this profession. I have an inner drive to take care of young people who are sick. My skills, knowledge, and experience in school nursing will enable me to bridge education and health care in your school. I believe I have what it takes to perform this role effectively, guided by set health standards.”
12. What Major Challenges Did You Face During Your Last Role? How Did You manage
By asking this question, the interviewer wants to know whether you are a problem solver. Mention one or two challenges and how you addressed them.
“One of the major difficulties I faced in my last role was lack some specialized screening equipment for some conditions. Students would come to the school health care facility but couldn’t get help. We would ask them to seek help far away and make some be out of class for weeks. At some point, I decided to engage the school management on this matter. They were willing to begin setting aside funds for buying the screening equipment. Luckily, I also managed to talk to some donors who were visiting a nearby public health facility. They visited our health facility after a month and later on donated the screening equipped to us.”
13. What Would You Do to a Student Who Refuses to Take Medication
The interview manager wants to know what approach you would take when a student neglects medication. State the steps you would take in such a case.
“I would call the student and seek to first understand the reason for not taking medication. If there is a real underlying problem, I would address it or direct the student accordingly. Then, I would make the student understand the reason for taking medication and why it is necessary for his/her health, well-being, and academic performance. With that understanding, I would encourage the student to take medication and do follow up.”
14. As a School Nurse, Where Do You See Yourself in Five Years?
The interviewer asks this question to know your career ambitions and what you intend to achieve in five years. State a specific goal or goals that you intend to achieve.
“To begin with, I want to advance my degree to become a specialist. I also want to acquire professional certification. I also intend to have acquired more skills and knowledge in school nursing. That way, I will be in a position to handle more difficult challenges or handle healthcare management roles.”
15. How Would You React to a Parent Who Complains About the Healthcare Service You Offered to Their Son or Daughter?
The interview wants to assess how you react to feedback. Say that you would listen and not take it personally or negatively.
“I will listen carefully to the parent till he/she finishes the speech. Then, I will respond without showing negative emotions. In particular, I will apologize in case there was a mistake. But if the child didn’t tell the whole truth, I will narrate my standpoint to make the parent understand how I perceive the situation from a nursing point of view.”
16. What Is the Biggest Challenge That You Foresee in This Job?
The interviewer aims to know if you are aware of the challenges associated. Mention a difficulty that you anticipate and how you hope to address it.
“Unlike adults, young students do not always open up or reveal if there are problems in the school particularly in their dormitories. Sometimes they get used to unhealthy lifestyles and are afraid of reporting others who smoke bhang or use drugs. Yet, these substances could be affecting their health. But I will seek to maintain rapport with them so that they can feel free to share with me their problems that may be affecting their health. I will also encourage them to use avenues the school has established to report anything issues that may threaten their health.”
17. If A Student Comes To You And Says His Head Or Stomach Aches Badly And Asks To Go Home, What Would You Do?
The interview manager seeks to know whether you would send the student home just like that or you would act differently. Demonstrate that you will find out the history of the issue and what could be triggering the aches.
“I will begin by administering some relief medication and then measure the body temperature and monitor him for some time. Then, I will look at my records to see if the student has had the same issue in the past. I will also investigate further to know whether the issues could be related to academics. If perhaps the student was to sit for a math test, I will find out whether that could be the issue. Otherwise, I would not send the student home just like that.”
18. What Measure Do You Take to Prevent Diseases Among Students?
This question is asked to assess whether you are proactive in preventing diseases among students. Mention the steps you take to ensure protect the health of students.
“I always keep an eye for symptoms and signs of any health problem among students. If I notice anything that suggests the presence of a disease, I take the affected individuals for assessment. If there is a problem, I will have them treated. Depending on the problem at hand, I roll out a health education program to sensitize learners about the condition.”
19. Why Do You Want to Leave Your Current Job?
The interviewer is interested in knowing what is compelling you to leave your current employer. Give your reasons and don’t say anything negative about your current employer.
“My current job has been rewarding in terms of my career growth. However, I feel that I need to grow further in my career. The way to do this is to find better opportunities. I consider this job as one of those opportunities. I also feel that I’m ready for more complex challenges and these will make me grow the more.”
20. Why Did You Decide to Pursue School Nursing?
Here, the interviewer wants to know why you choose to specialize in this area of nursing. Be specific and honest with your answer.
“Right from the time I choose the nursing profession, I felt attracted to take care of younger people. I felt that I would be very satisfied taking care of students. Personally, I find students to be easy to deal with when it comes to health matters.”
School nursing helps to advance the health, well-being, live achievement, and academic success of students. You need to show that you can do that. These questions will help you to demonstrate that you are indeed the right candidate for the school nurse job. Be sure to put on a decent attire and also arrive early for the interview.