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Using TA's more creatively


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Each member of my team has either visited other schools and nurseries or about to and one thing that is particularly striking is the difference in ratio's. We have have considerably higher ratios in both Nursery and Reception. Nursery 1 to 6 and 1 to 10 in Reception. (As I am sure you all realise with budgets as they are this is not sustainable and therefore this level is unlikely to continue next year)

 

We have free flow to the outdoors in both. Nursery is one large room in a L shape and in Reception we have 2 classes and a share indoor area.

 

Our outcomes, levels, attainment (which ever way you look at it ) aren't considerably higher than these other settings so as EYFS leader I am now wondering if we are using our additional adults effectively?

 

Currently in Reception we would have an adult in each class, 2 outside supporting child initiated and a adult initiated activity, 1 adult in the shared area and another supporting one of the classes depending on the focus need etc.

 

So my question is .......How would you use this level of staff?

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I think one thing I would be looking at is the 'vulnerable' children i.e. those with IEP's for whatever reason and the gifted and talented. Using support staff for targeted intervention could be a possible (if you do not already do this). I work in a nursery class as part of and infant school. Our ratios are 1:13 in Nursery and 2:30 in Reception.

 

In nursery we have target groups for speech and language which help us to support those with the most needs, this is having a positive impact and we are finding that the targeted children are beginning to make the progress expected.

One thing to bear in mind is that Ofsted will look at how well support staff are used and what impact this has upon progress.

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WE are doing focussed groups, in addition to the above staff I have an additional TA to support a child with SEN. The ratio enables us to have 6 ability grouped phonics sessions daily and ensure provision for the vulnerable, those who qualify for Pupil Premium EAL FSM etc.

 

But I am mindful of Ofsted and the use of support staff as well as personally wanting to ensure all the children reach their potential and recive the best experiences I can offer.

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in nursery i would assume each adult has a key group of 6 and ensure they know and are responsible for their progress - accountability!! they need to keep 'next steps' for learni ng for each child for each aspect/strand of learning in mind/handy at all times and have time planned in to interact with children on these in child initiated play, as well as planning in adult activities to move them on. and similar in reception, but teacher have 15/16 and other 2 staff 7/8.

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