Who is who at school?

Listed below are some of the professionals you may come into contact with in NSW schools

The school principal has overall responsibility for the whole school.

Responsibilities include:

  • education programmes
  • learning outcomes
  • welfare of all students
  • the management of staff and staff welfare
  • financial management of the school
  • management of the school property
  • development of partnerships between the school and the school community

In larger schools, an assistant principal has specific areas of responsibility within the school and supports the principal with school management. There may be an assistant principal who has specific responsibilities in the area of support for students with disabilities.

The classroom teacher is responsible for the education of all children in their class.

Responsibilities include:

  • assessing children to find out what they know already, and what their current learning needs are
  • programming for the learning activities in the class based on the NSW curriculum
  • communicating with parents and carers about children’s progress
  • co-ordinating particular activities in the school e.g. sport carnivals or music

School Learning Support Officer or S.L.S.O. (also known as a teacher’s aide) is employed to support the teacher in their teaching role.

School Counsellor
Assists in supporting the well-being of students in the school. The school counsellor may be invited by the school principal to be involved as part of the team, with consent from a parent.

Responsibilities include:

  • counselling around individual student needs
  • student welfare
  • cognitive, social, emotional and behavioural assessments
  • working collaboratively with your team to develop appropriate school based support for students

A Learning and Support Teacher is attached to every public school for an allocated period of time each week. The amount of time this teacher is available to the school varies based on the number of children enrolled in the school.

Responsibilities include:

  • providing direct specialist assistance to students in regular classes with additional learning and support needs and their teachers
  • collaborating and consulting with parents and teachers
  • assisting classroom teachers to develop, monitor and assess individual education programmes

The administrative officer supports with the administration of the school.

Responsibilities include:

  • administrative support for the school
  • providing and receiving forms
  • receiving payments and fees
  • providing first aid to children as needed
  • attending to children in sick bay
  • telephoning parents if their child is unwell

The out of school hours (OOSH) coordinator leads an OOSH service.

Responsibilities include:

  • Providing care to children before and/or after school hours
  • Supervising (OOSH) staff who are caring for children before and/ or after school hours
  • Ensuring that an education and care programme is in place based on the National Education and Care Services Regulations and Framework for School-aged Care
  • Communicating with parents and carers about their children’s care
  • Communicate with school staff as needed


For further information about disability support through the NSW Department of Education click here