This course is suitable for anyone who currently works or would like to work, as a teaching assistant, learning support assistant or special needs assistant in a primary, secondary or special school. It’s a work-based qualification so you achieve it through experience in a real work setting. It will give you the opportunity to build and develop more specialist skills for work, for example with children with special needs or disabilities.
You’ll learn about the main stages of child development from birth to 19, focusing on the kinds of influences and transitions that can affect children. You’ll find out about your responsibilities for safeguarding children’s welfare and explore the issues of equality, diversity and inclusion. You’ll learn how to communicate effectively and build appropriate relationships with those in your care, as well as with parents, carers and other professionals. You’ll develop strategies for promoting positive behaviour, delivering and reviewing assessment and supporting teachers with learning activities. There are optional units including supporting bilingual pupils or children with special educational needs. You could focus on pastoral support, speech and language development, extra-curricular or off-site activity. The course will help you to grow as a professional, learn to reflect and improve on your own practice and that of your team in school.
Your time will be spent in a real work environment where you will put your learning into practice and be observed by your Teaching and Learning Co-ordinator. There will be regular tutorial support to ensure that you are keeping on track and you will be given an e-portfolio.
Assessment is through a variety of methods including observations in the workplace, witness testimonies, product evidence, professional discussions, assignments and project/case studies. All evidence will be logged to your electronic portfolio of evidence. You will be assessed through direct observation of your performance in the workplace. You will build a portfolio of evidence and there will be some written assignments and set tasks.
Employment in school-based support roles including: teaching, learning or classroom support, behaviour, pastoral, welfare, or English as an additional language support. This course will provide you with the knowledge and skills to pursue positions with increased autonomy or responsibility such as team leader or senior special needs assistant. It can also be a stepping stone to further training for Higher Level Teaching Assistant positions or a Foundation/Degree in a related discipline.