Schools that boost numbers of teaching assistants tend to see an improvement in results, research by London's Institute of Education has found. The study, for the Training and Development Agency for Schools, examined 83 secondaries. It found the largest increases in student attainment correlated to those which had increased spending the most on support staff. The findings contradict a study published last year by the institute which suggested teaching assistants had a negligible impact on attainment. Dale Bassett, senior researcher for the think tank Reform, argues in today's TES that the previous research shows schools should now cut spending on assistants.
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