Education Assistant's Role in Education Essay

1556 WordsApr 7, 20127 Pages
Significant reforms have been made to the education system due to the demands of a fast changing and increasingly competitive global economy. The need to provide quality education that maximizes the potential of every child and raise standards of pupil performance has increased the demand for education assistants and broadened the range of responsibilities they perform. In the past, an education assistant’s role involved preparing materials for the classroom, childcare and pastoral care. However in today’s teaching environment, an education assistant is also required to support students with special needs, implement lesson plans, assess pupil progress, manage challenging behaviours and much more. It is important to note that many of these…show more content…
A lack of communication can present as a key challenge that educational assistants encounter in their position. Poorly defined job descriptions can lead to teachers and education assistants having disagreements over individual responsibilities (Chopra & French, 2004; Riggs & Mueller, 2001). Successful educational assistants must take the initiative, when in doubt, to communicate and clarify with the supervising teacher and promptly resolve disputes that might occur. Clearly differentiated roles between the education assistants and teachers continue to remain an issue that is difficult to resolve as the role of an education assistant cannot be examined in isolation. It should include the examination of the interrelated and distinct roles of the teacher and special-education teachers as well in best meeting student needs (Giangreco, Suter, Jesse & Doyle, 2010). At best, a successful educational assistant has to keep an open mind and remain adaptable to meet the variety of needs and demands while working with different teachers and students (Kay, 2005). Another challenge that education assistants encounter is the inability of teachers to allocate time to address issues that require urgent attention. Teachers and education assistants may only have limited time to discuss pertinent issues. A way to resolve this issue according to Tyrer, et al (2004), is to

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