Term time for an array of support workers

6th December 2002 at 00:00
In producing this supplement, we weren't sure what to call that group of people who work in classrooms but aren't teachers. We know they do a huge range of jobs, come from all sorts of backgrounds and aren't paid very much. Despite the low wages, most seem to like their jobs. There may be a shortage of teachers, but, as Karen Gold reports (page 4), finding support staff is no problem for many heads.

But it's hard to find a term for them that won't offend someone. Non-teaching staff seemed the worst, since it's wrong to define people by what they don't do rather than what they do - so we've avoided that one. Otherwise, we've varied the language according to the terms used in the schools we visited. The Government has opted for "teaching assistant", which many dislike - but as it's now official, that's the term we've ended up with most often.

We've also taken account of workers who aren't based in classrooms but who support children's learning nevertheless, such as secretaries, caretakers and technical people.

Who is this supplement for? Everyone in schools who is a member of the learning support team or who works with them. For heads and other managers there are case studies showing schools which have made creative use of assistants (pages 7-9). For teachers there's advice on working with other adults (page 10). And for learning support assistants there are tips on behaviour management, legal issues and even how to read to a class (pages 11-14). We hope this magazine will help and support all of you.

The contents of this magazine are the responsibility of The Times Educational Supplement and not of Unison

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?

Subscribe

To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers

Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
 
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar, Buyagift.com, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today