28 June 2018
The total number of TAs working in English schools is down for the first time ever – but encouraging signs from the MITA project show how a strategic focus on TAs can unlock their potential.
30 June 2017
An Australian politician has claimed “we need to get rid of” pupils with SEND from mainstream classrooms, because “the teacher spends so much time on them, they forget” about others pupils. But data from our new research suggests otherwise...
15 December 2016
Research evidence can’t offer certainties, but it can help school leaders make better decisions.
30 October 2016
The evidence on deploying TAs to deliver out-of-class interventions is unarguable. Our new MITA project aims to show that up-skilling TAs and carefully rethinking their use within classrooms can unleash their full potential.
28 September 2016
Our work with the Education Endowment Foundation has shown how the teaching profession and researchers can unite around the evidence to co-construct solutions for making better use of teaching assistants. In this blog, Rob Webster reflects on what he has learnt from working closely with those at the chalk-face.
15 August 2016
The quantification of support for pupils with EHCPs, often expressed in terms of TA hours, is central to holding schools and local authorities to account. Yet research suggests the quantity of SEND support is prioritised over the quality. One local authority's novel approach to hours, which offers schools greater flexibility over provision, has been labelled "unhelpful" and "unlawful" by a leading SEND solicitor. But is there a wider, less talked about, disconnect in the way legal and teaching professionals conceptualise SEND support?
10 June 2016
22 months after they were commissioned, new professional standards for TAs have been published. And the come with some heavyweight backing.
Educational Excellence Everywhere? A solution to the teacher recruitment crisis is right in front of us
19 March 2016
The new education white paper has capacity building at its core. But with the emphasis on leadership and a new managerial architecture, has the Dept for Education missed a trick in addressing the teaching crisis in the classroom?
28 February 2016
What happens when provocative findings from educational research get wide coverage, but are narrowly reported? What are the risks to policymakers, practitioners and researchers? Rob Webster shares his experience of helping schools make sense of the headlines about teaching assistants.
15 October 2015
The DfE’s decision not to publish the draft standards for teaching assistants is disappointing, self-defeating and leaves the Government’s commitment to the professional status and development of TAs in tatters. Will they ever see the light of day.....?