Elementary School Jobs for People Without a Degree

Although most people may think of elementary schools as education-related professions that require a lot of postsecondary study, there are actually many job options for those who do not have a degree, which are explored further here.

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Career Options for Elementary School Jobs for People Without a Degree

Some people enjoy working with children but do not want to pursue a career that requires them to have a degree, such as being a teacher or principal. They may also be interested in working in a school environment so that they can have regular daytime working hours or extended summer vacations. Career options that can be pursued in a elementary school environment that do not require a degree involve a wide range of tasks, such as clerical work, cooking, cleaning, helping students and teachers or ensuring the safety of the faculty and children.

Job Title Median Annual Salary (2016)* Job Outlook (2014-2024)*
Crossing Guards $26,700 6%
Secretaries and Administrative Assistants $37,230 3%
Security Guards $25,770 5%
School Bus Drivers $30,150 6%
Janitors and Building Cleaners $24,190 6%
Food Preparation Workers $21,440 6%
Teacher Assistants $25,410 6%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Career Information for Elementary School Jobs for People Without a Degree

Crossing Guards

Crossing guards who work at schools can stop vehicles to ensure the safety of pedestrians. Their job is to ensure that those arriving to and departing from the school are able to do so safely, and they may also let drivers know of potential hazards. Opportunities for crossing guards are available at all school levels, including elementary schools. It's common for crossing guards to have a high school diploma, but they do not need to have a degree to pursue this occupation.

Secretaries and Administrative Assistants

Secretaries and administrative assistants need a high school diploma. Those with computer experience or some postsecondary training in office procedures will have an advantage when seeking work in this field, but it is not necessary for them to have a bachelor's degree. Schools, including elementary schools, employ secretaries and administrative assistants who perform tasks such as assisting parents and students, answering phones, preparing documents and updating files.

Security Guards

Some security guards focus on working in the field of education, and they may be responsible for patrolling places such as elementary schools. They may learn through on-the-job training, although a high school diploma or GED may also be required. No degree is required for this career, which involves monitoring property and people to help prevent crime. They may also intervene and detain those who've been caught stealing or performing other unlawful acts.

School Bus Drivers

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that as of 2014, 41% of school or special client bus drivers worked for elementary and secondary schools, which makes this a career option for those interested in working at elementary schools. School bus drivers are required to have a commercial driver's license and must meet the physical requirements for this job and are not required to have a degree. They pick up students in the morning and transport them to school and then take them home at the end of the school day. They may also drive students and staff to other locations when field trips are planned.

Janitors and Building Cleaners

Some janitors and building cleaners are employed by elementary schools, and they are usually only expected to learn through on-the-job training, so they do not need to have a degree to do this type of work. Janitors and building cleaners ensure buildings are safe and sanitary. They report damage that needs to be repaired or fix things themselves. They also perform cleaning tasks, such as washing windows and mopping floors.

Food Preparation Workers

No degree is required to be a food preparation worker, since these professionals learn through on-the-job training and do not necessarily even need to have a high school diploma to enter this field. There are employment opportunities at elementary schools, which means this is an elementary school job option for individuals who do not have a degree. They are responsible for tasks such as cleaning the areas where food is prepared, gathering the ingredients for recipes, ensuring food is ready to be cooked or securing food that needs to be stored. They may also cut vegetables or meat and wash dishes.

Teacher Assistants

Teacher assistants typically prepare for their career by completing some postsecondary studies. Some schools may require applicants to have an associate's degree, but that is not required for all opportunities in this field. They assist teachers with tasks such as taking attendance or preparing materials. They may also work with specific students who need extra help to understand the concepts or master the skills being taught.

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