Ulster County Personnel Department
Civil Service Examination Announcement
NON-REFUNDABLE FILING FEE $20.00
#60781 SECRETARY (SPECIAL EDUCATION PROGRAM)
LAST DATE FOR FILING APPLICATIONS: January 22, 2019
EXAMINATION DATE: March 2, 2019
SALARY: The starting salary varies by location.
MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: Candidates must meet the following requirement(s) on or before the date of the examination:
A. Graduation from a regionally accredited or New York State registered college or university with a Bachelor's or higher level degree; OR
B. Graduation from a regionally accredited or New York State registered college or university with an Associate's degree and two (2) years of full-time paid, or its part-time equivalent, clerical work experience; OR
C. Graduation from high school or possession of a high school equivalency diploma and four (4) years of full-time paid, or its part-time equivalent, clerical work experience; OR
D. An equivalent combination of training and experience as defined by the limits of A, B and C above.
Special Requirement for appointment in School Districts including BOCES: In accordance with the Safe Schools Against Violence in Education (SAVE) legislation and by the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education, candidates for employment in school districts must obtain clearance for appointment from the State Education Department based upon fingerprinting and a criminal history background check.
ANTICIPATED ELIGIBILITY (FOR MINIMUM QUALIFICATION ‘A’ ONLY):
If you expect to complete the educational requirement within six months of the date of examination, you may apply. If successful on the examination, you will not be certified for appointment until you have submitted proof of completion of the requirements to the Ulster County Personnel Department.
Where College is a requirement, you will be expected to submit college transcripts no later than MARCH 18, 2019 or you will be unconditionally disqualified. If college transcripts are already on file with our office, indicate this on your application. Once submitted, college transcripts will be held on file in our office for a period of TEN YEARS. Transcripts need not be official copies; However, they must contain ALL information necessary to qualify you for this position.
NOTE: If your degree and/or college credit was awarded by an educational institution outside of the United States and its territories, you must provide independent verification of equivalency. Please visit www.naces.org to view and access acceptable companies providing this service; you must pay the required evaluation fee. Please note the verification company must be a NACES member.
APPLICATION REVIEW TOLERANCE POLICY
For the purposes of this policy, "tolerance" shall mean the leeway given regarding work experience when reviewing an application. Applicants lacking a small amount of work experience when applying for promotional or open-competitive examinations may qualify under the following conditions:
1) Candidates will be given a maximum tolerance of one (1) month.
2) Tolerance will be given only when the minimum qualification requires one or more years of work experience.
3) Tolerance Policy does not apply to education or licensure/certification requirements. (See particular examination announcement for "Anticipated Eligibility" information).
4) Tolerance Policy does not apply where required work experience is set forth by law or rules.
5) Tolerance Policy does not apply to enable applicants to meet residence requirements.
For more information regarding Tolerance Policy, please contact our office at (845) 340-3550.
DISTINGUISHING FEATURES OF THE CLASS: This position involves responsibility for the performance of a variety of complex secretarial and routine administrative duties for a Special Education Program within a school district. The incumbent provides routine administrative support to the program director and his or her staff pertaining to matters of a confidential nature. The work involves frequent contact with the public, school personnel and students. Work is performed under the general supervision of a higher level employee with leeway allowed for independent judgment regarding the application of the school district’s operations, policies and procedures. Supervision may be exercised over the work of subordinate clerical staff. Does related work as required.
SUBJECT OF EXAMINATION: Written test will cover knowledge, skills, and/or abilities in such areas as:
The grammar and usage questions test for the ability to apply the basic rules of grammar and usage. The punctuation questions test for a knowledge of the correct placement of punctuation marks in sentences. You will be presented with sets of four sentences from each of which you must choose the sentence that contains a grammatical, usage, or punctuation error.
2. Keyboarding practices
These questions test for a knowledge of preferred practices in such areas as letter format, capitalization, hyphenation, plurals, possessives, word division, word and figure style for numbers, and common proofreading marks. In addition, there will be a passage to proofread followed by questions on how to correct the errors in the passage.
3. Office practices
These questions test for a knowledge of generally agreed-upon practices governing the handling of situations which typists, stenographers, secretaries, and office assistants encounter in their work, as well as a knowledge of efficient and effective methods used to accomplish office tasks. The questions cover such topics as planning work flow; setting priorities; dealing effectively with staff, visitors, and callers; filing and retrieving information; safeguarding confidentiality; using office equipment; and making procedural decisions and recommendations which contribute to a well-managed office.
4. Office record keeping
These questions test your ability to perform common office record keeping tasks. The test consists of two or more "sets" of questions, each set concerning a different problem. Typical record keeping problems might involve the organization or collation of data from several sources; scheduling; maintaining a record system using running balances; or completion of a table summarizing data using totals, subtotals, averages and percents. You should bring with you a hand-held battery- or solar-powered calculator for use on this test. You will not be permitted to use the calculator function of your cell phone.
These questions test for the ability to spell words that are used in written business communications.
These questions test for knowledge of the principles and practices employed in planning, organizing, and controlling the activities of a work unit toward predetermined objectives. The concepts covered, usually in a situational question format, include such topics as assigning and reviewing work; evaluating performance; maintaining work standards; motivating and developing subordinates; implementing procedural change; increasing efficiency; and dealing with problems of absenteeism, morale, and discipline.
The New York State Department of Civil Service has not prepared a test guide for this examination. However, candidates may find information in the publication "How to take a written test" helpful in preparing for this test. This publication is available on line at: https://www.cs.ny.gov/testing/testguides.cfm.
CALCULATORS: "Unless specifically prohibited, candidates are permitted to use quiet, hand‑held, solar or battery powered calculators. Devices with typewriter keyboards, ‘Spell‑Checkers’, ‘Personal Digital Assistants’, ‘Address Books’, ‘Language Translators’, ‘Dictionaries’ and any similar devices are prohibited."
USE OF CALCULATORS IS RECOMMENDED FOR THIS EXAMINATION.
*FEES*: Send your check or money order for twenty dollars ($20.00) (made payable to COUNTY OF ULSTER) with your application. Please include the examination number, title, and applicant’s name on your check or money order. DO NOT SEND CASH. NO REFUNDS WILL BE ISSUED, therefore, you are urged to compare your qualifications carefully with the qualifications for admission and apply only for those examinations for which you are clearly qualified.
EXCEPTION TO FEE REQUIREMENT: An exception to the processing fee will be made for persons receiving Supplemental Social Security payments or public assistance (Safety Net Assistance or Temporary Assistance to Needy Families), provided Foster Care or certified Workforce Investment Act of 1998 eligible through a state or local social service agency, and for those who are currently unemployed. Individuals wishing to claim this waiver of fee on the basis of Supplemental Social Security, Safety Net Assistance or Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, must certify on their application, under number 12 Remarks, that they are receiving public assistance and must indicate the type of assistance they are receiving, the agency providing the assistance and their case numbers. Persons claiming this waiver through Foster Care or Workforce Investment Act of 1998 Certification must specify the program and name of their contact agency. Persons claiming this waiver, who are currently unemployed must certify on their application, under number 12 Remarks, that they are currently unemployed and must provide documentation that they are receiving unemployment benefits or other unemployment documentation deemed appropriate by the Ulster County Personnel Officer.Such claims are subject to later verification and, if not supported by appropriate documentation, are grounds for barring appointment.
Applications may be obtained at the Ulster County Office Building, Personnel Department, 244 Fair Street ‑ 5th Floor, P.O. Box 1800, Kingston, NY 12402‑1800 OR by mail (INCLUDE A STAMPED SELF‑ADDRESSED, LEGAL‑ SIZE ENVELOPE) OR from our website at: http://www.co.ulster.ny.us/personnel/index.html. Applications must be received by the Ulster County Personnel Department or postmarked no later than the ‘LAST DATE FOR FILING APPLICATIONS’ stated on page one of this announcement.
For those applications submitted in person on the last file date, please submit no later than 4:30 PM. All applications must be in our office no later than 5:00 PM on the last file date. Applications postmarked by the last file date will also be accepted.
This examination is being prepared and rated by the New York State Department of Civil Service in accordance with Section 23‑2 of the Civil Service Law. The provisions of the New York State Civil Service Rules and Regulations dealing with the rating of examinations will apply to this test.
CRIMINAL BACKGROUND INVESTIGATION POLICY: In accordance with Ulster County Local Law Number 14 of 2007, a criminal background check (including fingerprinting) will be initiated by the Ulster County Personnel Department upon initial employment or re-hire to Ulster County positions, and conducted by the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS), the New York State Office of Court Administration, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services Verification Information System (IMAGE Program), or any law enforcement agency.
SPECIAL NOTE: All public agencies are required by law to provide full and equal opportunities for minorities, women and to people with disabilities. All qualified candidates are encouraged to compete without regard to race, creed or national origin. Applicants requesting special testing arrangements as a Saturday Sabbath Observer, alternate test date candidate (in accordance with Alternate Test Date Policy), or an active member of the military away from the area on the scheduled test date must clearly indicate this fact on the application. All such requests must be supported by appropriate documentation.
VETERANS: Non-disabled and disabled veterans who wish to claim additional credits MUST request a Veterans Credits application from our office. This form must be completed and submitted along with a war service (DD214) form prior to the establishment of the resulting eligible list. Veterans credits may only be added to a passing score and may only be used for appointment once. Candidates currently in the armed forces may apply for and be conditionally granted veteran’s credits. Any candidate who applies for such credits must provide proof of military status to receive the conditional credits. You may not claim additional Veterans Credits after the eligible list has been established. It is the candidate’s responsibility to request the Veterans Credits application forms and submit these forms and any required supporting paperwork before the eligible list is established.
On November 5, 2013, New York State voters approved an amendment to Article 5, section 6, of the New York Constitution regarding the award and use of additional credits for certain disabled veterans on open competitive and promotion civil service examinations for positions with New York State and local governments.
For eligible lists established after January 1, 2014, disabled veterans may be entitled to additional credits on a civil service examination. Every situation is different. If you have specific questions or concerns, please contact our office.
ADDITIONAL CREDITS FOR CHILDREN OF FIREFIGHTERS AND POLICE OFFICERS KILLED IN THE LINE OF DUTY: In conformance with section 85-a of the Civil Service Law, children of firefighters and police officers killed in the line of duty shall be entitled to receive an additional ten points in a competitive examination for original appointment in the same municipality in which his or her parent has served. If you are qualified to participate in this examination and are a child of a firefighter or police officer killed in the line of duty in this municipality, please inform this office of this matter when you submit your application for examination. A candidate claiming such credit has a minimum of two months from the application deadline to provide the necessary documentation to verify additional credit eligibility. However, no credit may be added after the eligible list has been established.
APPLYING FOR CIVIL SERVICE EXAMINATIONS IN MULTIPLE JURISDICTIONS WHEN EXAMINATIONS ARE SCHEDULED ON SAME DATE: If you have applied for any other Civil Service examinations for employment with any other local government jurisdiction, you must make arrangements to take all the examinations at one test site. Please indicate your intentions under #12 remarks on the application for examination.
If you have applied for both State and local government examinations, you must inform the Ulster County Personnel Department of your intent to participate in both exams no later than two weeks before the date of the examinations. When taking local and State examinations on the same day, all of these examinations must be taken at the State test site. You will be informed by letter when and where to report for the examinations and you should bring the Ulster County admission notice with you to the State test site along with the State admission notice you will receive from the State.
If you have applied for other local government examinations, you must inform all local government civil service agencies of the test site at which you wish to take your examination(s) no later than two weeks before the date of the examinations.
For this examination write your intentions under #12 Remarks on the last page of the Ulster County Examination Application OR write a letter to the Ulster County Personnel Department, 244 Fair Street – 5th Floor, PO Box 1800, Kingston, NY 12402.
*If candidates have not received notification of this examination within four (4) days of the examination, they should contact this office immediately.
ORIGINAL COPY: YELLOW
ISSUED: December 18, 2018