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Education Assistants and Teachers

Roles and Responsibilities in British Columbia

Outline of Presentation

Why Define Roles?

Ministry of Education

Collective Agreements

Outline of Presentation (cont)

Suggested Roles (as agreed by BCTF and CUPE BC)

Expectations of Employer

General Responsibilities

Designing, Planning and Organizing

Program Delivery

Assessing Student Progress

Developing Supportive Environments

Outline of Presentation (cont)

Job Titles

Questions to Consider

Why Define Roles?

To better meet the needs of special education students

BC Provincial Review of Special Education

For clear expectations (ie. Training and credentials), staffing and wage purposes

For teaching assistant respect!

BC Ministry of Education Definitions

Teaching Assistant

Range of functions from personal care to assisting the teacher with instruction

Assist in the collection of data for evaluation


Designs, supervises, implements and assesses program

Evaluates and reports to parents

BC Ministry of Education Definitions (cont)

Teaching Assistants

under general direction of a teacher

under supervision of an administrative officer (ie. Evaluates)

Collective Agreements

Collective agreement definitions on roles and responsibilities take precedence over other definitions

Expectations of the Employer: Suggested Roles (as agreed by BCTF and CUPE BC)

Adequate resources

Suitable workspace

Access to information about the student (IEP) and about learning techniques

Inservice training

Adequate release time in order to prepare, develop, implement and monitor the IEP

General Responsibilities for T.A.s and Teachers (as agreed by BCTF and CUPE BC)

Positive, respectful working relationship

Meet professional standards

Advocate for conditions of success for student

Advocate for protection of rights (human and legal) for student

Follow safety guidelines

Facilitate the inclusion of student

Encourage special needs student to become an independent learner

Designing, Planning and Organizing(as agreed by BCTF and CUPE BC)for Teaching Assistants

Program Design and Activities: Gathers and shares performance and behaviour information with teacher, (teacher designs program and IEP).

Modifications: Adapts strategies to accommodate individual student, (teacher determines modifications).

Resources: Assists with the development of instructional learning resources, (teacher provides resources, monitors and advocates for resources for TA).

Reviews using teacher/team developed strategies, (teacher reviews and reinforces).

Designing, Planning and Organizing(as agreed by BCTF and CUPE BC)for Teaching Assistants (cont)

Goals: Assists students with activities, monitors and reports to teacher/team, (teacher develops goals).

Community: Supports learning in community-based settings, (teacher designs goals).

Priorities: Follows priority plan and updates teacher on implementation, (teacher establishes priorities).

Discipline: Follows teachers discipline plan, while being consistent with expectations for student (IEP), (teacher provides discipline plan).

Program Delivery (as agreed by BCTF and CUPE BC)for Teaching Assistants

Instruction: Facilitates student learning, (teacher instructs and facilitates).

Behaviour: Implements demonstrated techniques and reports to teacher, (teacher develops behaviour program and models techniques).

Techniques: Implements, (teacher defines techniques).

Workplace: Monitors effectiveness and reports to teacher and/or Admin. Officer, (teacher seeks assistance of administrative officer to provide a workplace for the teacher assistant).

Assessing Student Progress (as agreed by BCTF and CUPE BC)for Teaching Assistants

Informal (functional): Assists the teacher, (teacher ensures profiles are current).

Meetings: Attends meetings during the day, (teacher convenes/attends meetings).

Documents: Assists in the collection of data, (teacher evaluates according to IEP).

Parents: Provides information to teacher, (teacher reports to parents).

Records: Assists in maintaining records, (teacher maintains records).

Developing Supportive Environments (as agreed by BCTF and CUPE BC)for Teaching Assistants and Teachers

Workplace Concerns: Documents and shares

Policies & Procedures: Remains current, monitors implementation, shares information

Discuss concerns to facilitate early problem solving through informal and regularly scheduled workday meetings

Follow school/district safety guidelines

Developing Supportive Environments (as agreed by BCTF and CUPE BC)for Teaching Assistant

Personal and Health Care Routines: carries out, (teacher shares information on an as need basis)

Carries out specific procedures only if appropriate training has been provided, (teacher requests that appropriate training is provided)

Follows all established reporting procedures

Job Titles

CUPE B.C. is seeking to standardize job titles to Education Assistant in order to reflect current employment relationships as reflected in CUPE B.C. collective agreements

Questions to Consider

Is the TA/EA role outlined here an expanded or contracted role compared to what you do presently?

Would changing roles be positive or negative?


Defining roles for Education Assistants can help special needs students.

Defining roles for Education Assistants can lead to increased job security, higher wages and RESPECT!

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