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SEN teaching asst interview in secondary school. How is different to primary?
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greennailvarnish · 14/06/2021 16:17

How is a SEN ta different to one in a primary school? I am not sure if the role is with a specific student or a general one.

I have worked with all types of children in primary school with differing SEN or none.
However, in secondary school, would I be expected to be doing intervention groups or solely with one child?
How do SEN TAs operate in secondary school?

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LolaSmiles · 14/06/2021 16:24

In my school our TAs do a mix of 1-1 support for allocated EHCP hours and more general support for classes where there might be several children identified as needing SEN support. I've never worked in a secondary school that has a general class TA in the way a primary school might.

At my school the TAs are allocated based on who gets on well with particular students or groups, as well as which TAs are best at certain subjects. E.g. we try to put TAs who a great supporting Maths in with our KS4 maths lessons.

Like most secondaries, our TAs are based in a SEN support base. They are involved in supporting the calm space where children can go if they need to leave lessons and they are also rota-ed in to deliver interventions with small groups. Secondary TAs will often be used to help facilitate access arrangements for assessments and KS4 exams as well.

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greennailvarnish · 14/06/2021 16:58

@LolaSmiles Thank you- that's very helpful.
What kind of heip do students with ASD need most? I realise it is a spectrum.
What is it about the best teaching assistants that make them the best?

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LolaSmiles · 14/06/2021 18:09

ASD is a spectrum so you could have 12 students who meet the criteria for ASD diagnosis and all 12 could present differently.
If I had a TA working with a student with ASD in my class, I'd want them to have read the pupil profile (sometimes called an All About Me, Pen Portrait, Student Profile etc) to hear from the pupil what helps/doesn't. I'd also expect expect to check our SEN documents to see what strategies are named there for that child, and whether there's any other needs that require support.

I might ask a TA to scribe during teaching inputs so student can listen, or the TA might write down the instructions on post it notes to break a task down. The strongest TAs know the difference between supporting and doing for in my opinion, and knowing when to sit back and let the student get on is key. Helicopter TAs in a secondary classroom tend to be unhelpful in my experience.

Obviously other people will have other experiences though.

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greennailvarnish · 14/06/2021 21:10

@LolaSmiles Thank you Star

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