The inclusion assistant

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The project was designed to find out from young people with disabilities, including those with learning disabilities, to think about the role of non-teaching assistants in mainstream schools and whether the support currently provided by them is helping them feel included in mainstream life.

The researchers talked to 12 young people who need a lot of support at mainstream school. They told us that they wanted assistants in school who are more like the personal assistants employed by disabled adults under the direct payments scheme.

They saw the role as that of a facilitator who would support both their educational needs and their social inclusion.

A report, video and training can be purchased from the Alliance for Inclusive Education. The training course for Teaching Assistants and their managers equips these support staff to carry out the role of an inclusion facilitator.

If you are interested in developing this idea in your school or college please email Christine Burke at cburke@fpld.org.uk.