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To think TAs don't really aid students' learning

(234 Posts)
Bridgeovertheriver Thu 11-Jun-15 16:53:28

And as such, why is so much spent on them? (Assisting students with a physical disability excepted obviously.)

TwinkieTwinkle Thu 11-Jun-15 16:55:42

What makes you think that?

cuntycowfacemonkey Thu 11-Jun-15 16:56:09

hmm well obviously it's difficult to argue against such a concise and informed opinion.

Samcro Thu 11-Jun-15 16:56:14


FriskyMare Thu 11-Jun-15 16:57:24

"So much money" pah! Do you know how much TA's earn???

superram Thu 11-Jun-15 16:57:35

If you look at government research they don't. Usually because they teach the less able rather than the teacher. However, I love my ta and she offers such a lot to the students in other ways that she is worth the money!

NobodyLivesHere Thu 11-Jun-15 16:58:06

My son couldn't function in school without his TA. they are vital in a class of 30 Kids with one teacher.

slippermaiden Thu 11-Jun-15 16:58:25

shockconfused They do reading with students, they take small groups of students who need extra help or who are doing better than average and do work with them. They free up the teachers time by doing some preparation in the classroom. My goodness what an ignorant person you are!

Pumpkinpositive Thu 11-Jun-15 16:58:38

well obviously it's difficult to argue against such a concise and informed opinion.

It's certainly concise. An veritable War and Peace of a thesis distilled into ten wee words.

ouryve Thu 11-Jun-15 16:58:44

What are you basing your assertion on? Admittedly, some TAs are truly shit, but good ones help kids organise themselves, take small groups for differentiated activities, help kids who struggle with emotional regulation, act as mentors, carry out SALT exercises, listen to and help with reading, adapt materials to meet specific needs and so on.

Bridgeovertheriver Thu 11-Jun-15 16:59:32

Apologies, I thought I'd attached a link. That's one of a few articles that indicates a teaching assistant actually impairs rather than promotes progress.

That isn't, obviously, to say that individuals aren't dedicated and skilled at their jobs, but rather that the role itself is not one suited to helping students learn.

cremedecacao Thu 11-Jun-15 16:59:42

Wow. You have no idea...

I am a teacher in a reception class. Without my TA, I would be left with 30 4/5 year olds, who are supposed to have free access between our indoor and outdoor classroom, on my own.

What would slip? Reading? Displays? Updating the children's Learning Journeys? Outdoor learning? 1-2-1 time? Booster groups? I could go on...

undoubtedly Thu 11-Jun-15 16:59:45

Until you come up with some reasons or even (God forbid!) proof as to why you hold this view, I cannot see a lot of point engaging with it.

Jesus, MN used to be a place for intelligent debate hmm

MargoReadbetter Thu 11-Jun-15 17:00:18

Is that you, David? Looking for more things for the chop?

Whichseason Thu 11-Jun-15 17:00:55

Goverment research does suggest that they way ta are usually used in lessons does not improve learning. I would agree the issue is they way that they are used that is the issue. A good ta is invaluable.

AcademicOwl Thu 11-Jun-15 17:01:24

Yep. Unreasonable & ill informed. Next?


Bridgeovertheriver Thu 11-Jun-15 17:01:25

Creme - but then (s)he is assisting you, not the pupils, which isn't what I'm speaking of.

But by assisting the teacher, she is freeing up the teacher to work with the children - that seems pretty obvious to me.

jaspercat2002 Thu 11-Jun-15 17:03:16

Why don't you think they aid learning? From my son's personal experience I would disagree. He has recently been in a focussed reading project run by an experienced TA which has helped his reading come on amazingly. The TA's at his school also run targeted maths extension groups, social skills support sessions etc.

It does, of course, depend on the TA and how the school uses them. I have read research which suggests that where TA's are used exclusively to support struggling learners this can mean these learners actually and up with less contact with the teacher. If used and supported well though I think they are more than worth their 'cost'.

DixieNormas Thu 11-Jun-15 17:04:08

My son will need a TA to access main stream school. He doesn't have a physical disability though.

What makes you think only dc with physical disabilities need TAs

Bridgeovertheriver Thu 11-Jun-15 17:04:14

Which - I agree.

I often get little/no notice of if a TA is coming and it frequently changes too. Some of our TAs "do the work for" the students which obviously isn't helpful.

ouryve Thu 11-Jun-15 17:04:18

Well, that article doesn't have a beef with teaching assistants, just with the way they are often used.

AllThatGlistens Thu 11-Jun-15 17:05:33

<refrains from swearing>

If my eldest hadn't had his amazing TA fully supporting him he'd have never have been able to continue on in mainstream primary.

Because of their continual input and support he has flourished, met his expected targets and is confidently preparing to go on to a specialist resource within a mainstream high school.


Pumpkinpositive Thu 11-Jun-15 17:06:09

Creme - but then (s)he is assisting you, not the pupils, which isn't what I'm speaking of.

By assisting the teacher surely she is obviously assisting the pupils? Otherwise the teacher would be in sole charge of 30 4-5 year olds.

Probably not conducive to the learning environment if she has to stop teaching every time one of the little angels threatens to bolt/riot etc.

MargoReadbetter Thu 11-Jun-15 17:06:10

What research are you talking about? Who carried it out? Private consultancy, government friend? what did they measure?

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