Students who have excellent school attendance records often outperform those with poor attendance records. In the US, school districts are responsible for developing and implementing strategies to discourage truancy or absenteeism in public primary and secondary schools. To obtain student attendance records from each school, they rely on school attendance clerks.
What Do School Attendance Clerks Do?
The day-to-day tasks of school attendance clerks include:
- Recording the number of students who are absent in each class – This involves collecting absence slips from classrooms at the end of each lesson
- Issuing tardy slips to students who have genuine or authentic reasons for late class attendance
- Verifying the authenticity of absence notes brought by students – This involves calling the student’s parents to verify their child’s reason for being absent
- Maintain a variety of student records, such as student class lists and suspension letters
- Providing teachers and school administrators with reports detailing student attendance observations
School attendance clerks work from 8am to 5pm, Monday through Friday. During school holidays, you can also expect to be on holiday!
These clerks spend their time in an office, which is situated within the school’s compound. The job involves a lot of walking, since they move from class to class taking attendance records.
What is the average annual salary for school attendance clerks? Find out below:
School Attendance Clerk
Like most clerical jobs, school attendance clerks do not need advanced qualifications to attract employers. In fact, you just need to have a knowledge of:
- Standard office practices
- Standard English usage
- Basic record keeping and report preparation
To acquire this knowledge, you can earn an associate degree in secretarial studies or clerical work. These programs are typically offered at community colleges.
High school graduates with vast clerical or office support experience can also qualify for employment.
Since this is not a knowledge-intensive profession, your mastery of the following occupational skills can mean the difference between competence and incompetence:
- Superb report writing skills
- Strong skills in records management
- The ability to pay close attention to details
- Good communication and interpersonal skills to communicate and establish positive relationships with students, parents, and educators
- Good multitasking skills
- Good planning skills
- Good math skills
- An interest in promoting the quality of education.
What does the future hold for school attendance clerks? Well, there are a number of career progression possibilities.
If you wish to move a step ahead in the clerical field, you can obtain a bachelor’s degree in secretarial science. Combining this credential with vast work experience can earn you a promotion to the school attendance supervisor’s position, where you will supervise other clerks.
It is also possible to move into classroom teaching by pursuing a bachelor’s degree in education. This position will also require a teaching license.
Although school districts are the main employers of school attendance clerks, employment opportunities are also available in private primary and secondary schools.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics does not provide occupational outlook statistics for school attendance clerks. In general, employment opportunities for these clerks are limited. According to the Institute of Educational Sciences, there are about 13,600 school districts for public schools and 33,366 private schools. This results in a total of about 46,966 jobs for school attendance clerks – many of which are currently occupied.
Fortunately, some clerks are moving to supervisory positions or changing occupations, creating job opportunities in the process. So if you are really interested in this position, you should be patient enough to wait for a vacancy to occur.