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CECV Intervention Framework Module 5e Learning & Teaching ROLE OF LEARNING SUPPORT OFFICERS
Purpose of this Module As a result of participating in this unit you will: • Clarify the role and expectations of Learning Support Officers (LSO) in our schools • Be familiar with the Effective Practices for Learning Support Officers document 2
Core Principles 1. All students can succeed 2. Effective schools enable a culture of learning 3. Effective teachers are critical to student learning success 4. Teaching and learning is inclusive 5. Inclusive schools actively engage and work in partnership with the wider community 6. Fairness is not sameness 7. Effective teaching practices are evidence-based 4
Inclusive Education An inclusive education system can be described as one which values diversity and celebrates difference. Inclusive education systems seek to engage every learner to ensure “the successful participationand maximised achievementof every student”(Elkins, 2004, p13) 5
Four distinct features of effective practices for educators working with children with additional learning needs 1. Clarification of the role/expectations 2. Identification of tasks/responsibilities 3. Establish clear pathways for communication 4. Identification of training 6
By any other name……. Learning Support Assistant Learning Support Officer Teacher Aide Paraprofessional Teacher Assistant Multi-cultural Aide 7
What do you do? List the expectations and responsibilities of the LSOs in your school. Match the listed award duties with role description. How do they align? 8
Victorian Catholic Education Multi Employer Agreement (2008) LEVEL 233.1.1 Duties • assist students on an individual or group basis in specific learning areas’ • assist with the communication between students and teachers, particularly the interpretation of instruction • provide basic physical and emotional care for students • participate in team meetings • assist with physical requirements of students requiring special care eg. toileting • observe students and draw the attention of the teacher to them when necessary • participate in the monitoring and evaluation of programs and student involvement • assist with communication between teachers and non English speaking parents/students • assist in the translation of documents • assist with the clerical duties associated with normal classroom activities • assist with the collection, preparation and distribution of teacher aids • assist in the preparation of equipment and purchasing of materials and supplies asrequired 9
LEVEL 233.2.1 Duties • in consultation with teachers/staff, undertake specialist instruction to students in specific areas, eg. instruction in music, languages • liaise with teachers/staff in relation to curriculum requirements’ • using equipment and materials, prepare or assist in curriculum support materials or assist students in the preparation of materials, eg. photography, conducting science experiments, video-taping, audio recording, document preparation on computers, language laboratories • assist with correction of students’ work • assist with identifying student learning/behaviour problems • provide specialist advice under the supervision of senior personnel, to students in relation to the handling and use of materials and equipment • in consultation with teachers and other senior staff select reference materials and other educational tools 10
LEVEL 433.3.1 Duties • participate in parent interviews as interpreter and translator • assist with student assessment and reporting • report to parents/relevant therapist on progress of student • monitor responses of other students to disabled student and identify discriminating attitudes • assist in following up student assignments to ensure that work is submitted • demonstrate an understanding of curriculum by adapting teaching aids LEVEL 533.4.1 Duties • Responsible to senior management for the following: • management of a specialised unit eg. pastoral care • assist in providing strategic advice on specific support services and their impact on school curriculum and services • develop policy in relation to students for the unit/support services • develop student profiles for the use of unit/support services staff 11
LEVEL 6 33.5.1 Duties co-ordinate policy development relevant to area of specialisation provide strategic advice on specific support services and their impact on school curriculum and services deliver professional support eg. therapy, guidance, counselling, social work, careers, work experience, pastoral care 12
In a Nutshell:Role Descriptorsin accordance with the Agreement Learning Support Officers: • provide direct or indirect services to students, assist students on an individual or group basis in specific learning areas; and • work under the supervision of a teacher, a higher level Learning Support Officer, or principal who has the ultimate responsibility for the design, implementation, and evaluation of education programs and related services. 13
CECV Intervention Framework (Link to Figure I, page 3 of Effective Practices Framework for Learning Support Officers) 14 CECV Intervention Framework
Identification of role & tasks Identification of tasks 16
Pathways of communication Identification of training 17
Educational Support / Intervention Role of the LSO in Teaching and Learning Role of LSO Work with the student to support the development of the particular learning goals identified. Closely liaise with the teacher to decide upon the specific strategies to be implemented. Collect data for analysis by the 'learning team'. LSOs will have the skills and traits required for successful implementation, as well as access to relevant professional learning. Role of LSO Work in partnership with the teacher to implement particular aspects of the learning plans for groups of students. Collect data for analysis by the learning team. LSOs will have the skills and traits required for successful implementation , as well as access to relevant professional learning Role of LSO Work alongside educators to support the learning activities of students. May include general support to groups of students whilst the teacher is engaged in focused teaching. May also involve provision of individualised support e.g. mobility or communication support for short periods where required. 18
The role of the LSO can be varied and complex It may include: • Assignment to one child or more children with disabilities, to groups of students with similar needs or across various teaching spaces in a school. • Supporting a student’s academic learning, behaviour program, physical care, or social progress throughout the entirety of a school day including class and recess times. • Providing academic support in Literacy or Mathematics. • Supporting social development through conversational skills or social interactions. • Providing behavioural assistance to diffuse a tantrum, providing sensory support, and setting up a reward system for good behaviour. • Playground or bus duties, creating or building a social story, communication board, duplicating learning materials in larger print or on the computer, or organizational tool for a student with disabilities. • Working with parents. • Student’s personal care such as tying a shoe, washing hands, or dressing for outdoor recess. 19
Professional Learning Teams Opportunities to address the issues Considerations are: • Interference with ownership and responsibility by general educators, teachers may become dependent upon LSOs, hand over responsibility • Separation from classmates, creating a barrier between him/her and peers. • Dependence on adults. Too much scaffolding, a lack of fading • Impact on peer interactions, LSO communicates for the student • Limitations on receiving competent instruction, lack of training to teach the most ‘needy’ • Loss of personal control. LSOs who make decisions for the child they work with, not all adults are helpful, don’t understand the limits and boundaries, and may follow the directions of ANY adult. We teach them to ‘do as their told,’ and that is not always a good lesson. • Interference with instruction of other students, taking up more time. 21
Consider this example….. • An LSO provides the student's primary literacy instruction. • The student is removed from class activities at the discretion of the LSO rather than the teacher. • The student spends 80 percent or more of his or her time with a paraprofessional. • The student spends the majority of his or her social time (lunch, recess) with an LSO rather than with classmates. • The LSO, rather than the teacher or special educator, makes the majority of day-to-day curricula and instructional decisions affecting the student. • These examples highlight a double standard. Most educators would consider these situations unacceptable for students without disabilities, yet these situations occur all too frequently for those with disabilities. 22
Professional Reading • Giangreco, M. F. 2003, ‘Working with paraprofessionals’, Education Leadership, 61 (2), 50-53. 23