Teaching assistants and the Pupil Premium: Setting the record straight

New research into the role that teachings assistants have to play in delivering Pupil Premium outcomes is welcome. SecEd editor Pete Henshaw hopes that it will see an end to accusations that these vital members of the school team have no impact on student

It is great to hear that we can shortly expect an update from the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) on what has become something of a controversial debate in education circles – the role of teaching assistants.

It all began with Institute of Education (IoE) research in 2012 which was jumped on by many commentators as proof that teaching assistants make no difference to students’ outcomes.

What the research actually said was that teaching assistants can make a difference but that some schools need to rethink how they use them; that too often teaching assistants were being placed in “pedagogical roles for which they had not been adequately prepared”.

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