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Teaching assistant in Year 4

(32 Posts)
pontypridd Mon 20-Jul-15 23:25:04

Is it the case that by Year 4 there is no need for a full - or near to full time teaching assistant any longer?

I have concerns about DS's new teacher next year. She is very young and an NQT. First time to teach this year group as well. DS has a statement of special needs, but not enough hours to pay for any full or even part time support ... level D, I think it is.

I think that means that no extra funding comes to the school for him.

Will post this in the special needs section as well.

All I really wanted to know was whether it is the case that hours for the TA should less now because the children are older and in Year 4.

Thank you.

bloodyteenagers Mon 20-Jul-15 23:31:52

If a ta is required then they are.
If ta's weren't required after y4,
Then they wouldn't be any ta's in secondary.

moab Mon 20-Jul-15 23:33:32

No but in all schools I've been in there tends to be fewer TA s in ks2

pontypridd Mon 20-Jul-15 23:34:04

What I have been told is that the TA is not required to do full days any longer, now that they are in Year 4 ...

pontypridd Mon 20-Jul-15 23:35:56

But moab. If a child in the class has a physical need that requires extra help. He doesn't get extra funding through his statement - I don't think. But should there not be a full time TA in that class? Particularly if the teacher is an NQT?

moab Mon 20-Jul-15 23:52:04

The nqt thing is a red herring. The responsibility for all pupils is now more in the hands of teachers. The SENCO is still there but it is much more the teacher 's responsibility for SEND pupils now. This came in with the new SEND code of practice last September

moab Mon 20-Jul-15 23:53:52

Plus even if there was a TA (and some schools don't have any TAs anymore anyway) it wouldn't be their responsibility for your ds as they would be there to be support all children that need it

It would probably be worth speaking to the teacher to ask her how she is going to help your ds and if that's not satisfactory talk to the SENCO about how his needs are going to be addressed

pontypridd Tue 21-Jul-15 00:16:22

What do you mean the NQT thing is a red herring? If the responsibility lies more with teacher now - sure the fact that the teacher is an NQT is a worry ...

Sorry. I'm very tired. Will go to bed and read this tomorrow again.

Thank you for your input moab.

mrz Tue 21-Jul-15 07:51:46

I'm in Y1 and don't have a TA ... some schools have lots of TAs with one in every class, others have fewer who work where there is the greatest need and may work in a different class for different lessons

mrz Tue 21-Jul-15 07:53:25

A NQT is a qualified teacher

fortyfourfeasts Tue 21-Jul-15 07:58:49

An NQT is still a teacher. Lack of experience does not mean he or she is not up to doing the job. In our school, the TAs are placed according to need. It may be that as a child matures, their needs change and they may not need as much support, in fact encouraging independence may be something the child needs to work towards. I'm not saying that's the case for you, but I think the first step should be to talk to the existing teacher and/or SENCO and find out what the decision to reduce the support was based on.

mrz Tue 21-Jul-15 08:04:33

Does your son's statement say he should have one to one support for his needs? If it does the school must provide one to one for the time indicated in the statement.

Sallyhasleftthebuilding Tue 21-Jul-15 08:11:18

The more statements the greater need, or large class numbers. Go and ask for more clarification if you need from school.

ItsNotAsPerfectAsItSeems Tue 21-Jul-15 08:12:48

Don't worry about the NQT thing. She may have lots of SN experience. She'll certainly be enthusiastic and motivated and keen for your DS to do his best.

It's true that in general, TA allocated time decreases in Ks2, although some schools raise that up again in Y6. It's simply due to it being easier to manage 30x9 or 10yr olds on your own. Not easy but logistically easier. I'm surprised you think school, without funding, could provide 1:1 TA for your DS. I'm not saying he wouldn't benefit massively but the budget isn't available for that. It's harsh and you could certainly ask if there's room for any extra time but even if a TA was available to the teacher for say, 5hours a week, they wouldn't always be with your DS anyway. I quite often use TA time to stretch my more able group or support the 'big' middle. I'm making a massive assumption that your DS' needs include LDs so apologies if it's a physical need instead. If it is, then you have a better case for proving that help is needed.

ItsNotAsPerfectAsItSeems Tue 21-Jul-15 08:13:53

Yes, def check his statement and go into school to ask for clarification on how he will be supported.

Minispringroll Tue 21-Jul-15 09:48:44

Just because the teacher is an NQT, that doesn't mean she'll have to have a TA in her room. She's a qualified teacher after all. She should get support through extra training and by having a mentor throughout her first year, but that's normal and part of her induction.
I'm an experienced teacher and I'll have a full time LSA in my Year 6 class for the first time next year. She's 1-2-1 support for one specific child with a high level of SEN. The progress of this child will still be my responsibility, though. Previously, I've had support for two mornings a week. In that time, our LSA worked with a range of different groups, not just my lowest attaining one. It depends on the level of support required by the children in the class,...not on the level of support required by the teacher. TAs aren't there to babysit weak teachers. hmm That's for SLT to monitor and fix.

IsItMeOr Tue 21-Jul-15 10:01:11

As others have said, check your DS's statement and check that he will be getting what it says he needs. If you think he needs more than it says, then you will need to look at that at his next review, I guess?

To hopefully reassure you about the NQT thing, DS had a NQT for his reception year. She was confident, capable, caring, motivated and very up-to-date on the latest thinking. We could not have hoped for a better teacher to support DS while we were pursuing a diagnosis for him - ASD - which he didn't actually receive until September of Year 1.

Lurkedforever1 Tue 21-Jul-15 11:00:18

In ks2 dds class didn't have ft fixed ta's, except a statemented 1to1. But there were plenty of floating ones because even with any form of sn/Sen the same child/ children who might need ta support in one area didn't need it in another. Although it was usually the same 4, none were actually resident for that entire year or specifically for that classroom, which allowed the ta's areas of expertise to be more tailored to the childs need.

pontypridd Tue 21-Jul-15 16:27:20

Thank you for your feedback and thoughts everyone.

Just to be clear: I am not expecting DS to have 1 to 1 support when there is no extra funding coming from his statement. I just would have thought that a full time or near to full time TA in this class would be of help to him and others and also the teacher. There are, of course, other children in the class with extra and higher needs. I don't know whether they have diagnoses. I know they don't have statements.

DS doesn't have learning difficulties as such. He does have attention and some behavioural stuff which is tied up to his CP. I am mostly worried though that at the time when they are doing D&T or other learning that needs two hands to put things together he'll be stuck without any help.

The TA doesn't have to be there specifically for him at these moments. But someone with an eye on the whole class can spot when he needs help and go and help him.

ItsNotAsPerfectAsItSeems Tue 21-Jul-15 16:43:15

I think your worries about support during things like D&T are justified. Just go in and ask how school plan to support your DS at these times. If he has CP then these things should be recorded on his IEP.

mrz Tue 21-Jul-15 17:39:07

OP it doesn't matter if there's no extra money attached it's the wording of the statement that matters. If it says he requires x number of hours support the school must provide it from the school budget if necessary.

pontypridd Tue 21-Jul-15 21:35:12

The statement doesn't say how many hours - because our LA won't make that clear on statements. But I've been told that it is 15 hours ...

mrz Tue 21-Jul-15 21:36:57

If it's not written into the statement I'm afraid the school don't have to provide set support

IsItMeOr Wed 22-Jul-15 08:40:14

pontypridd I'm not sure that what your LA is doing re refusing to specify what support is needed sounds right/legal. People on the Special Needs board will know better, or you could try contacting IPSEA.

AllPizzasGreatAndSmall Wed 22-Jul-15 21:32:45

There is a reason LAs don't want to specify how many hours and use wishy-washy words like regular, it means they get away with providing bugger all. Statements should always be specific about what support is needed, for how many hours and who should provide it, otherwise they are not worth anything.

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