Aspire Teaching Assistant Training: Relationships and Behaviour Management

All school staff worked extremely hard during lockdown. We were incredibly impressed with the commitment and unwavering passion of our colleagues through a very challenging time. To ensure we delivered the best education to our children in school and remotely, many job roles had to change and adapt accordingly to demands. 

Following new research funded by trade union Unison that analysed data from 9,055 Teaching Assistants, TAs have been recognised as the 'unsung heroes of Covid'. Over half of TAs (51%) managed a class or a bubble on their own as class teachers were delivering remote teaching during the lockdown. A report by researchers at University College London also shows that one in four TAs took on new responsibilities without any training.

To ensure our TAs and LSAs feel supported and have the tools and strategies in place to assist further with behaviour management moving forwards, we have introduced a two-part TA training session for all of our schools.

Part one was hosted last week by Lyndon Evans, Aspire Executive Principal, Sarah Hennigan, Aspire Lead Practitioner, Jenny Rayment, Class Teacher at Hammond Academy and Sarah Ayre, Class Teacher at Knutsford Primary Academy. Jenny and Sarah were individually highlighted within the Trust as being particularly skilled at behaviour management. They were both an integral part of the training session and their expertise and experience within the schools helped to give their colleagues real-life examples of situations similar to those they are facing.

The session focused on relationships and managing behaviour, offering guidance and encouraging discussion about ways to help individual children and whole classes. A range of strategies were highlighted that could be used in different contexts with different pupil needs. Time was also spent outlining ways to form strong relationships and understanding the importance of developing trust. 

Commenting on the training session, Lyndon Evans said "It is extremely important that we get to know the children at an individual level and separate a child's behaviour from the person they are. As adults, we need to set the expectations and make sure we model the behaviours that we want to see in the children."

The aim of the first session was to provide the staff with some effective strategies to take away and try in class. They have also been asked to reflect on the successes and challenges of their roles, which will be shared and discussed in the second session.

Thank you to all of our TAs and LSAs for going above and beyond during lockdown, this has definitely not gone unnoticed.