Advice for Working with an Educational Assistant

Last week in my inclusive education seminar (EDUC 409), I had the opportunity to speak to my colleagues about my experience working as an educational assistant for the Calgary Board of Education.  During my five years with the CBE I worked with some amazing teachers who really made me feel that I was a welcome and valued member of the classroom team.  Here are some things I feel are important for building a strong relationship with support staff who you will work with in the classroom:

  • make them feel that they are a valued member of the classroom team
  • communicate their role in the classroom to your students
  • set time aside to meet with your EA on a regular basis
  • establish clear and regular lines of communication
  • give them a schedule of events that are happening in your class
  • let them know what topics or lessons you will be covering
  • keep your EA in the loop about school policy and events
  • be clear about the data you want an EA to collect on each student
  • ask for their input on students when completing report cards or  IPPs
  • make sure that they have read behaviour plans or IPP documents
  • involve them in planning conferences if they are directly involved in supporting a student
  • don’t be afraid to draw on their expertise or interests
  • acknowledge the valuable contribution that they make in your classroom

Here is a useful publication that outlines the roles and responsibilities of teacher assistant in the classroom.

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About Barb English

I am a curious soul and lifelong learner who is currently employed as a teacher in a Special Education classroom with the Calgary Board of Education.
This entry was posted in Inclusive Education & Diversity and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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