Teaching assistant and pupil
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Teaching assistants should not cover classes, say ATL

Schools in England, Wales and Northern Ireland are short-changing children by using under-qualified staff, according to the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL).

Nearly half of all higher-level teaching assistants have covered classes when regular teachers are absent, the ATL found.

ATL general secretary Dr Mary Bousted warned the practice is "exploiting" teaching assistants and putting children's learning at risk.

She told BBC Radio 5 live's Breakfast: "There is evidence that if teaching assistants are used inappropriately... then children's education does suffer because they're not qualified teachers."

  • 07 Oct 2013
  • From the section UK
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