On-site study a big boost

20th February 2004 at 00:00
Teaching assistants and support staff have helped bring about a transformation at Kemnal technology college in Sidcup, Kent.

The boys' school has been praised by David Miliband, the school standards minister, for the way it has "pioneered workforce reform".

Teaching assistants are often used to mark pupils' work, as well as to hand out pens and give students individual support during lessons.

One teacher at the school even takes some Year 11 classes of up to 75 students with help from five assistants - an approach which has not yet attracted any complaints from parents or pupils.

Since last year no subject teachers at the school have been asked to cover for absences. Instead, the job is done by five cover assistants.

Similarly, staff have been released from playground duties since the school employed a team of lunchtime supervisors.

Headteacher John Atkins believes the changes in workforce are part of the reason why the school has seen remarkable improvements in its GCSE results.

This view is shared by Mr Miliband, who says the school demonstrates the kinds of "personalised learning" and its benefits which he would like others to imitate.

"I saw teachers and support staff working together in teams to meet the needs of pupils. They were sharing lesson plans and assessment data to boost the quality of teaching and learning," Mr Miliband said.

"The key to unlock change has been workforce reform. Across the year teachers focus on adding the greatest value to pupil progress - by focusing on teaching."

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


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