How to be a school liaison
Do you want to work at a job where you can help your community? School liaison jobs are good jobs for immigrants and other people who speak more than one language. Find out about being a school liaison worker.
What is a school liaison?
A school (or school-home) liaison is a person who connects the school to parents and students. This job is a growing field because more and more schools are realizing that liaison workers help children do better at school. It is a great job for immigrants or refugees who speak more than one language and care about their community.
Other names for this job are: community liaison, school liaison officer, school-home liaison, parent-school liaison worker, and parent liaison.
About the job
What can you expect in the job of liaison worker?
Duties of a school liaison
A school-home liaison is there to help students succeed. To do this, they keep good relationships between the school and families, and they help parents, too.
Many school liaisons work with families that do not speak English. They help new students settle into school, and they help students with problems. School-home liaisons also help teachers by making sure their communication with families is good.
Here is a list of some of the things they do:
- Share information among students, parents, and school staff
- Set up home visits and office meetings with parents
- Talk to teachers to find out how students are doing
- Organize community events and activities that support families, such as open houses and potlucks
- Refer students and their families to services they need
- Run programs for parents, such as parenting classes and English classes
Watch school liaisons talk about what they do
School-home liaisons usually work in one school, but they may work for a school district covering several schools. They often have their own office so they can talk to students and families in private.
Salary for a school liaison
The salary of a school-home liaison in the United States ranges from $25,535 to $37,400 a year, with an average pay of $19 per hour.
About the person
Liaison work in schools is a good job for a person who cares about children, who can speak another language, and who is respectful of diverse cultures, education levels, and lifestyles. If you enjoy community events, this is a good job for you. It can be a mentally challenging job to help people with many different situations.
Qualities you should have
- Friendly, encouraging, non-judgmental manner
- Good community connections
- Cultural competence and awareness
- Ability to talk about difficult topics
- A positive approach to problems
- Respect for people’s privacy
Skills you will need
- Very good verbal communication with colleagues and families
- Good written communication for letters and emails
- Organizational skills for parent classes and social events
- Computer data entry
- Report writing
- Basic math
- Bilingual skills
Watch school liaison workers talk about why they love their jobs
You will find that your language skills, connection to the community, and personal communication skills are the best qualifications for this job.
Training for school liaisons
Your best training would be previous experience in a social service program, school, or community organization.
You do not need a specific certification to become a school liaison. But school home liaisons often work with refugee and immigrant populations. You can take our free class about educating refugee and immigrant students. It includes a lesson about working with families.
Experience for school liaisons
Some school districts require school liaisons to have experience working with families. If you don’t have the experience yet, you can volunteer at your local school, at an after-school organization, or other organizations in your community that help families. For example you can volunteer with Reading Partners. Or you can find an after-school program near you where volunteers are needed.