Today (Monday 24/6/13), in the House of Commons, I asked the Education Secretary Michael Gove MP to clarify the Governments position on the future of teaching assistants.
There are over 230,000 teaching assistants in England, who support teachers in the classroom, giving them more time to teach, as well as having a positive impact on other aspects of the pupil’s learning experience.
During Education Questions, I asked the Minister the following question: “Teachers in my constituency tell me that teaching assistants make a huge contribution to their schools. Their work not only means that teachers have more time to teach, but has also had a big impact on things like attendance and student discipline. In light of recent press speculation, will the Secretary of State place on record his support for teaching assistants and pledge to keep them in schools?”
In reply to my question, Mr Gove said that he would be “delighted” to put on record his support for the work that teaching assistants do. I am therefore pleased that he has now clarified the government’s position for teaching assistants, putting an end to speculation about their future.
Mr Gove’s commitment follows on from recent assurances given by the Shadow Education Secretary Stephen Twigg MP during an online Education Policy session for the Labourlist website on the 20th June 2013.
Mr Twigg said: “Labour brought in teaching assistants and I totally support the principle of teaching assistants supporting a qualified teacher in the classroom where the school believes this is the best way to raise standards”