Teaching assistants support children with their learning activities in the classroom. They work closely with teachers to make sure pupils enjoy learning in a safe and caring setting.
The Skills Required
As a teaching assistant you will need:
- experience of working with children
- the ability to build good relationships with children, teachers, parents and carers
- a basic understanding of how children develop and learn
- flexibility and creativity
- the ability to work as part of a team
- good reading, writing and numeracy skills
- patience and a sense of humour
- the ability to manage groups of children and cope with challenging behaviour
Individual schools set their own entry requirements and decide which qualifications and experience they want.
Previous qualifications in nursery work, childcare, playwork or youth work can be useful for finding work. If you have enough experience of working with children or can show employers that you have the right personality and potential, they may take you on and train you on the job. Volunteering to help in a local school for a few hours a week is a good way to start.
The following qualifications are also available for those not yet employed in the role, and for those just new to the job, whether paid or volunteering:
- Level 2 Award in Support Work in Schools
- Level 2 Certificate in Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools
Most paid jobs will require you to have qualifications in literacy and numeracy at GCSE or equivalent.
Before you can begin working with the children, the school will carry out enhanced background checks through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).
Newport Pagnell is a town in the Borough of Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, England. The Office for National Statistics records Newport Pagnell as part of the Milton Keynes urban area. It is separated from the rest of the urban area by the M1 motorway, on which Newport Pagnell Services (the second service station to be opened in the UK) is located. The town was first mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086 as Neuport, Old English for 'New Market Town', but by that time, the old Anglo-Saxon town was dominated by the Norman invaders. The suffix 'Pagnell' came later when the manor passed into the hands of the Pagnell (Paynel) family. It was the principal town of the "Three Hundreds of Newport", a district that had almost the same boundary as the modern Borough. At one time, Newport Pagnell was one of the largest towns in the County of Buckinghamshire (the assizes of the County were occasionally held there) Today, despite its own substantial expansion, it has been completely dwarfed by the growth of Milton Keynes. There were also at one time two hospitals in Newport Pagnell, and six fairs were held for the townsfolk throughout the year.