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School secretaries support the principals in schools and provide helpful guidance and support to teachers and parents. In Catholic schools, school secretaries provide administrative assistance to the staff and guide the parents in their volunteer obligations. Besides assisting the principal, teachers and parents, Catholic school secretaries also provide a link between the school community and the church community.
Religious organizations currently employ approximately 13,801 secretaries across the United States. The starting salary for secretaries in religious organizations is approximately $13.80 per hour, or $28,710 per year. This is a much lower salary than that of public school secretaries. Individuals might choose to work in a Catholic school versus a public school based on other factors such as the a higher level of respectful and spirituality in the student body.
Increase in Salaries
Catholic school secretaries can receive pay increases based on the amount of time in their positions and their supervisory responsibilities. For example, a Catholic school secretary working more than six years can see a salary increase that brings her salary up to $34,000 a year. After working for more than 11 years, a Catholic school secretary's salary can increase by up to $4,000, for a total of almost $38,000.
Public Versus Private Salaries
Public school secretaries are generally paid slightly higher than Catholic school secretaries. Public school secretaries start at approximately $32,000 a year, which is about $4,000 more a year than Catholic school secretaries. The difference in pay is due to the source of funding for the schools: Public schools receive tax dollars for their funding, whereas Catholic schools are funded by tuition and donations from the church. Catholic school employees may be paid less, but they typically have a smaller number of students to administer.
In addition to base salaries, Catholic school secretaries receive benefits. These benefits often include health insurance, tuition reimbursement, paid leave, life insurance, free lunches and retirement plans. Catholic school secretaries are also usually recognized during Catholic Schools Week and Teacher Appreciation Week. Parents usually gift secretaries with flowers and gift certificates during these special recognition weeks. It's also customary for Catholic school secretaries to receive small gifts, such as flowers or gift cards, from parents at the end of the school year as a thank you.