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Challenges of new roles

Starting in a new job next session? Douglas Blane spoke to a variety of school staff who changed posts this year to see if the work fulfilled their expectations

Heather Kubba pupil support assistant, Giffnock Primary, East Renfrewshire

I had some idea what the job involved before I started, but there is more to it than I expected. It's not just cutting up paper and making displays. There's a lot of working with children and supporting their learning, with groups who are a bit ahead or maybe need some help to keep up.

I go into two Primary 1 classes and a Primary 2, as well as the nursery to help with early reading skills. I like the little ones.

I enjoy working with the kids, because it's different every day. At that age they're funny; they really make you laugh.

Keeping an eye on kids at playtime and lunchtime is probably the hardest part. They're always up to something. Keeping on top of it can be tough, especially for me, as my own children are at this school, so a lot of the kids know me already as a mum rather than as one of the school staff.

Parents see us as friendly faces in the playground and often ask us to keep an eye on their kids.

The pay isn't great, but the hours suit me. I probably wouldn't do it for any less though.

It can be hard work dealing with all the kids' demands.

The main thing is to keep a sense of humour and be very patient with the children. It's a very enjoyable job.

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