In this edition of our series on travel nursing with your family we are looking at the options you have when you are thinking about travel nursing with your school aged children.
The good news is that this is actually one of the easier scenarios of travel nursing with a family.
The main thing you need to keep in mind is that changing your kids school every time you change assignments is probably not a good idea for their development. But even that depends on your child, if they are able to make new friends quickly, then maybe it is something you could consider it, but do not enter into it lightly. Here are some resources you should look at if you are considering it.
- The Psychological Effects of Child Relocation
- Helping Kids Cope with Moving
- Moving and Psychological Factors
- Help your children deal with relocation & the psychological effects
Something else to keep in mind is the age of your children. If they are teenagers who you can trust to stay home alone while you (or your spouse) are working then one of the biggest concerns, child care, is not nearly as big an issue if at all.
If however, you will need to find before or after school care for younger children the prospect of travel nursing with school aged children is an incredibly difficult one for the typical 13 week assignment.
The other big key to your success of traveling with school aged children is the work situation of your spouse (or whoever is going to travel with you) and look after the kids if they are not old enough to stay home alone. Here are some posts that talk about travel nursing with your spouse that can help you evaluate your situation.
Instead if you want to travel with school aged children who are not old enough to stay home by themselves in a strange city you should consider one of two options.
- Home schooling as a travel nurse family
- Taking travel nursing assignments during summer vacation
- Try to work longer travel nursing contracts
Both of these options will take some planning and work, but they do fairly easily allow for you to experience travel nursing with your family without putting your kids through the challenge of going to a new school every 13 weeks.
Home schooling as a travel nurse
There are ton of great resources available for home-schoolers that can go much more in depth than we can here, but the most important thing to keep in mind is that even though you are home schooling will you probably still need a spouse or family member who travels with you to watch them and/or teach. This of course depends on their age.
In addition, changing schools often may also just prove to be a paperwork headache for you and travel nursing can be eno0ugh of a paperwork barrage without adding to it.
Taking travel nursing assignments during summer vacation
This is a great option for many families that are looking at travel nursing as a way to boost the household income, as long as you are able to guarantee a return to your full-time position when the summer is over. If you can then the main consideration here is making sure that the length of your assignment matches up with how much time your child actually has off from school. Just talk to your recruiter about this right away so they know your availability and the earlier the better.
This option also works great if you are a stay at home parent who wants to keep up your nursing skills by taking one travel nursing assignment a year. This is again a situation where you will want to be in contact with your travel nursing company early on so that they are aware of your expectations.
Try to work longer travel nursing contracts
Another option you have is to consider working contracts that are longer than the typical 13 week assignment. This is obviously an option you want to discuss in detail with your recruiter and you may have to talk to several different travel nursing companies before you find one that has an assignment that suits your families needs. However if you are if you would allow you to possibly be in one location for an entire school year.
Conclusion about travel nursing with school-aged children
Just like any other travel nursing with your family situation, traveling with school aged children although not as easy as going solo, is definitely possible with the right combination of planning, help and a little bit of luck and good timing.