Learning support workers in Wales – an update

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Following a consultation, it’s been confirmed that learning support workers at schools and further education colleges in Wales will have to register with the recently-formed Education Workforce Council (EWC) by 1st April 2016.

This includes people who work through supply agencies.

Am I classed as a learning support worker?

The official definition of ‘learning support staff’ is expected later in the year. In the meantime, we’ve been in touch with an EWC spokesperson who suggested that the following roles are likely to qualify:

  • Teaching Assistant
  • Higher-level Teaching Assistant
  • Classroom Assistant
  • Learning Support Assistant
  • Special Needs Assistant
  • Additional Needs Assistant
  • Pastoral / Welfare Assistant
  • Bilingual Support Assistant
  • Support Assistant
  • Instructor
  • Cover Supervisor
  • Foundation Stage Assistant
  • Technician
  • Learning Coach
  • Unqualified teachers

On the other hand, those who don’t directly support teaching and learning won’t have to register. For example, it’s likely this would include caretakers, school nurses and voluntary helpers.

Is there a registration fee?

Yes. The annual fee to join the professional body is expected to be £15, but this amount will be confirmed by Welsh Ministers in early 2016.

How do I register?

Registration hasn’t started yet. Your agency is likely to contact you about it when the time comes.

For additional details, we recommend reading the EWC briefing for learning support staff.