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School secretary

School secretaries provide administrative support in schools.
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What does a school secretary do?

Typical duties would include:

  • answering the phone and passing on messages
  • greeting visitors at reception and issuing name badges
  • typing letters, reports and other documents
  • dealing with incoming and outgoing post and emails
  • printing and photocopying
  • keeping clerical and computerised records of pupils and staff
  • producing statistical returns and reports
  • dealing with school meals administration
  • ordering equipment and stationery
  • paying invoices and banking cash
  • being responsible for first aid and the sick room

School secretaries come into contact with a wide range of people, including teachers, pupils, parents and carers, education welfare officers, social workers and school governors. In some smaller schools, this role may involve taking on extra management duties, such as responsibility for finance.


What do I need to do to become a school secretary?

Employers would expect a good standard of general education and you would need previous experience of office work. You should be able to use word processing, database, spreadsheet and accounts computer packages, although employers may provide training in some of these. You will also need a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check.

You do not always need specific qualifications, but you may have an advantage with GCSEs in English and maths, or a qualification in administration, computer skills or word processing.

If you do not have much previous office experience, you could start as a clerical assistant in a larger school and work your way up to a post with more responsibility.

Related skills

  • Administration
  • Communication
  • Interpersonal skills
  • IT
  • Organisation
  • Patience
  • Teamwork
  • Time management

Desirable qualifications

  • Level 2 Award in Support Work in Schools

Where to find out more


Where could I be working?

You could be employed by a local education authority to work in a state school. Alternatively, you could be employed directly by some state and independent schools. Agencies also offer opportunities for temporary and permanent positions.


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