To work as an education administrator, you typically need to:
- have a high school diploma or equivalent;
- have at least a bachelor's degree; and
- have one to five years of experience in education.
Education after high school
Many principals and assistant principals have an advanced degree in education administration. A master's degree in education is acceptable in most cases. Some jobs require a doctoral degree (PhD).
Preschool and childcare center directors must have at least a bachelor's degree. School district superintendents must have at least a master's degree. Administrators who oversee school counseling programs usually have a master's degree in school counseling.
Many colleges and universities offer bachelor's and master's degrees in education administration. Courses include school law, curriculum development, and personnel administration.
Preschool and childcare center directors typically need one to five years of experience in early childhood education. Many principals and assistant principals begin their careers as teachers. They typically work five years or more before becoming an administrator. Teachers in public schools must have at least a bachelor's degree and a teaching license. School district superintendents need experience in education administration.
In your first year as an education administrator, you will receive some on-the-job training. This usually is in the form of supervision by other administrators.
Many states require you to take continuing education courses each year. This is so you keep your skills up to date and maintain your license.