How Do I Become a School Receptionist?
A school receptionist can have many duties, but generally, he or she will be responsible for meeting and greeting visitors to the school, managing paperwork, managing phone calls and e-mails, and performing any other tasks assigned by administration or other faculty. In order to become a school receptionist, you will need to graduate from high school or earn an equivalent qualification, and in many cases, you may be required to attend a post-secondary receptionist training program, though this is not always a requirement. You can become a school receptionist without formal training as long as you have developed basic to moderate math skills and exceptional communications skills.
You will also likely be required to have some computer skills if you want to become a school receptionist, so if you have no experience with computers, it is a good idea to enroll in a community college course that will teach you the basic skills you will need. While not always the case, many schools now manage enrollment and attendance on computers, and as a receptionist, you will very likely need to draft letters and other documents using computer programs.
Once you become a school receptionist, you will be dealing with children of various ages for most of your day. That means you should be comfortable working with children, but more importantly, you should earn any certifications that are relevant in your area. In some regions of the world, for example, you won't need any certifications at all, but you may need to obtain a fingerprint clearance card from a local law enforcement agency. Some school districts may even require you to submit to a criminal history check to ensure you are qualified and legally able to work in a school setting.
Prepare for a job interview by creating a thorough resume that outlines your skills and qualifications. A strong cover letter will also help improve your chances to become a school receptionist. Be sure to dress presentably for the interview, as well as for every day of work. If you want to improve your chances of getting hired, you can enroll in an associate's degree program that will teach you all the necessary skills. Employers are more likely to consider you for hire if you are better educated and prepared.
@croydon - That was probably because it was a small school though. I've worked as a receptionist for a larger school and it was essentially a minimum wage job without much influence at all. All I did all day was direct parents to the right people and note down which students were going to be late.
It wasn't a bad job, but it wasn't the most fulfilling either.
@umbra21 - It really can be an influential role depending on what duties the receptionist has. My aunt became the principal of a small school a few years ago where there was basically just one woman working in the office and she thought of herself as the guardian of the school. She would give her opinion to reporters when they called about articles and she would barge in on meeting because she wanted to know what was going on. If she didn't like a teacher then they would get treated very badly. She was allowed to get away with this for a while because she was best friends with the previous principal, but when my aunt started they ended up having to "restructure" her job in order to get rid of her, because she was making so much trouble.
In my experience, this usually ends up being a post with a lot of power. When I was in teacher's college we were told that if we were smart we would make friends with the office staff (including the receptionists) and the ground-keepers and stay on their good sides as much as possible.
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