Twenty-one thousand HLTAs enhance teaching and learning
The 21 000th person has recently achieved higher level teaching assistant (HLTA) status, and the Training and Development Agency for Schools (TDA) reports this figure is set to rise fast.
HLTAs are in big demand in schools across the country, and little wonder. Their expertise is making a vital contribution to pupil learning and achievement (not least in mathematics and literacy), increasing capacity, and enabling teachers to do an even better job.
These are not empty words – it is teachers themselves who are testifying to this. A recent Institute of Education survey
found that 88 per cent of teachers feel support staff have increased their job satisfaction, 77 per cent feel support staff have helped reduce their stress levels, and 59 per cent believe support staff have decreased their workload.
This supports a National Foundation for Educational Research survey which found that 91 per cent of school leaders believe HLTAs make a positive contribution to pupil performance and 90 per cent believe they have brought about a positive effect in their schools.
“In the five short years since we first set up the role, HLTAs have established themselves as an invaluable resource in schools, enhancing teaching and learning in a whole host of different ways. The trick is to ensure they are deployed in ways that fully capitalise on their many skills,” says Graham Holley, Chief Executive of the TDA.
These skills include planning and preparing lessons, supporting pupils with special needs, and working with pupils on a one-to-one basis, in small groups and with whole classes. Increasingly, HLTAs are also developing expertise in specialist subject areas such as mathematics and science.
If you are a HLTA working in mathematics, why not share your thoughts and experiences throught the HLTA community
If you are interested in finding out more about the roles and further training for support staff, visit www.tda.gov.uk/support
or contact the Support Staff Enquiry Line (0845 600 2944). School leaders wanting to access information and guidance about developing and deploying their support staff should visit http://www.tda.gov.uk/leaders/supportstaff