Classroom Assistant Jobs Overview
A classroom assistant, also known as a teaching assistant or TA, provides support to a teacher in a classroom. A TA might be asked to work with a small group of children or to provide individual support. A classroom assistant might be required to deliver specific ongoing support, such as helping children with English as an additional language (EAL) or to provide one-to-one support for a child with special educational needs (SEN).
Classroom Assistant Jobs Education Requirements
A teaching assistant will need to have good levels of literacy and numeracy (GCSE 'C' or above). Good communication skills are essential as is the ability to work closely and effectively with teachers, children and parents. Completing a relevant course, such as the Level 3 NVQ for Teaching Assistants would be an advantage, as a placement in a primary school is mandatory. Experience with working with young children is an advantage. Some TAs choose to develop their career by becoming a Higher Level Teaching Assistant (HLTA) – a qualification which enables TAs to take on more responsibilities, such as teaching classes during periods of planned cover, allowing teachers time to plan and mark lessons.
Classroom Assistant Jobs Market
The vast majority of primary schools in the UK employ a number of teaching assistants, and this is not likely to change in the near future. Secondary schools also employ classroom assistants to a slightly lesser degree. The market for classroom assistant jobs is healthy, although some competition for job vacancies can be expected as the job is a popular career choice for ex-teachers and parents, thanks to the family-friendly hours and pleasant working conditions.
Classroom Assistant Jobs Salary Information
A full-time teaching assistant job pays approximately £13 – 14,000 per annum. A Higher Level Teaching Assistant earns more to reflect the additional responsibilities that come with the role. Pay rates vary considerably from school to school so the salary of an HLTA is about £16 -22,000 per annum. An assistant position can open up more teacher job opportunities; a Postgraduate Certificate in Education will be required for a full teaching job.