Assistants have to graduate too

3rd December 2004 at 00:00
Your article suggests that teaching assistants wishing to retrain as teachers are being unfairly treated when compared to graduates. This is not the case.

While teaching assistants play a valuable role in schools and should be encouraged to consider progressing to teaching if they so wish, the process must ensure that the quality of teachers entering the profession is protected. Requiring applicants to have graduate status is part of this protection of standards.

Therefore the situation is perfectly fair: the teaching assistants described in the article are entitled to study for a degree, and, if successful, continue towards teaching.

Requiring aspirant teachers to have a degree ensures they themselves are able to learn and have the academic ability needed to plan, teach and assess learning: no amount of experience as a teaching assistant can be considered equivalent to this. The teaching assistant quoted who considers her classroom experience as equal in value to a philosophy degree has a lot to learn.

Michael Gallagher Headteacher St Cuthbert's RC primary Sunderland

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now