National occupational standards (NOS) assert good practice for support staff, providing a concrete framework detailing how the roles and responsibilities of support staff in schools can be undertaken in a competent manner. Furthermore, NOS describe the knowledge and understanding that is required in order to be competent in a support role. In addition, the NOS are widely used in relation to training and professional development, described by the TDA as ‘supporting the learning process in schools.’ (NAPTA: 2009) NOS provide a valuable resource to schools that use them to assist in the creation of job descriptions and roles and responsibilities, as well as underpinning training, progression and supporting development needs of staff. The teaching assistant role is at the centre of the national occupational standards for supporting teaching and learning, with the standards reflecting the broader scope of responsibilities that the role now entails. Many standards are relevant to my job role with tasks beyond the level one job description, such as, working with children who have special educational needs, implementing IEP’S and Behaviour plans being undertaken. Despite the task ‘Monitor pupil’s responses to learning activities and accurately record achievement/progress as directed [and] Provide detailed and regular feedback to teachers on pupils achievement, progress, problems etc.’ (Veronica, W :2003) being on a level 2/3 job description it is regularly undertaken by many level 1 teaching assistants. The NOS STL9 Observe and report on pupil performance which relates to this task, details how ‘working under the direction of the teacher ... observations of pupils to gather evidence of their knowledge, understanding and skills upon which the teacher makes judgements about their stage of development [is carried out].’ (Tda: 2010)
Although in my role as a teaching assistant I feel capable of completing such as task, I am frequently undertaking work...
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