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Teaching Assistants

Teaching Assistants work alongside teachers in the classroom, helping pupils progress with their learning on an individual or group basis. Some specialise in areas such as literacy, numeracy, special educational needs, music, English as an additional language, and the creative arts.

There are now about 4,500 teaching assistants working in Hertfordshire local authority schools, who have a wide variety of roles. The LA aims to support both teaching assistants and schools to help ensure that all adults working with children in classrooms are part of effective teams which make appropriate use of the skills, knowledge and experience of each person in that team.

The LA supports teaching assistants in the following ways by the provision of high quality training and CPD courses. To view courses and book online visit:

Apprenticeship Programme for Teaching Assistants in Schools

Appropriately trained and deployed staff, supporting teaching and learning in schools, play a crucial role in supporting pupils, parents and their colleagues. The apprenticeship training programme is designed to support the increasing demand for trained support staff in schools, attract new people to the sector, up-skill the workforce and replace those who leave or retire. Having additional support in the classroom helps to increase student attainment and also helps to improve studentsí confidence and self-esteem. Support staff are very hard working and help the children to engage in lessons. Apprentices are cost effective. The Level 2 Intermediate Apprenticeship is applicable to learning support staff whose responsibilities at work are supervised or those who are new to the sector.

The Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship is applicable to learning support staff whose role requires competence across a range of responsibilities. Schools can access funded training for any member of support staff who is 23 years old or younger, does not hold a qualification at level 4 or above, work for more than 30 hours per week and has been a UK resident for more than three years. Funding may be available for staff members who are age 24 and over. There is an additional employer grant of £1500 per member of staff, under the age of 24, who joins the programme, up to a maximum of £7500. Further details is available at:


Professional Development Opportunities for Teaching Assistants

Higher Level Teaching Assistants

Higher Level Teaching Assistant status (HLTA) is highly recommended for anyone who may be taking on specified work – planning and delivering lessons in one area of the timetable.


The NVQs for Teaching Assistants at Levels 2 and 3 are work-based qualifications, designed for those who work with teachers in classrooms supporting the learning process in primary, secondary and specialist schools. This includes those with a general support role and those with specific responsibilities for a pupil, subject area or age group. After attending a start session candidates do most of the work in school, supported by an assessor.

National information on NVQs can be obtained from the following websites:


Foundation Degree in Learning Support

The University of Hertfordshire runs the Foundation Degree in Learning Support which is an opportunity to obtain a work-based vocational qualification and is equivalent to the first two years of a current undergraduate degree. Credits can be gained at Levels 1 and 2 with study divided into modules of 15 or 30 credits. Modules have taught contact time, private study, school based activity and assessed work. The Foundation Degree can eventually lead to a teaching qualification.

The course takes place at the DeHavilland Campus in Hatfield and details can be obtained from the University or visit: