Specialist Support of Teaching & Learning in Schools L3 Diploma

Course aims 

To provide learners with a secure understanding of the knowledge and skills needed when working directly with children and young people in school environments. To enhance the skills and knowledge of teaching assistants, learning support workers, parent support advisors and those in a similar role.

Learners will spend the first 4 weeks completing a free separate short course (20 hours) in Developing Thinking Skills. This will allow learners to gain essential skills and to provide an overview of what to expect when working in schools. Successful learners then progress to. the main course.

Course length 

160 hours – usually 32 weekly sessions of 5 hours – and a minimum of 200 placement hours.

What could these courses lead to? 

This course can lead to employment as an assistant in a school setting and as a route into higher education.

Job roles include: 

Teaching Assistant (TA)/ Learning Support Practitioner (LSP)​

Special Educational Needs Assistant​

Learners may also be able to progress onto higher education. Progression advice can also be provided by a member of the CEIAG team.

Who is the course for? 

The course is intended to be a progression route for assistants and workers already employed in this role in school settings on a paid or voluntary basis. It is essential for productive outcomes that all learners have a working knowledge of the impact of the support of teaching and learning in schools and have some hands-on experience of working in such a setting.

NB: This course requires a serious commitment and applicants should think carefully about their ability to undertake and achieve these objectives before enrolling.

Will I gain any qualifications? 

You will gain a Cache Level 3 diploma.

Do I need any knowledge, skills or qualifications? 

You would normally be expected to hold level 2 STLS, and have level 2 qualifications in both English and Maths. You will need to have a good command and understanding of written and spoken English. It is also advisable that you upgrade these skills to GCSE grade A*-C or 9-4 by the time you qualify. Proof of at least 200 placement hours is required.

Course content 

  • Identify and understand communication and professional relationships with children and young people.
  • Understand how to plan and deliver learning activities under the direction of a teacher.
  • Become familiar with the delivery of the national curriculum in your school setting.
  • Explain the importance of monitoring and maintaining learning resources.
  • Manage challenging behaviour.
  • Support learning of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities.
  • Safeguard children and support mental health.
  • Support children’s English and math skills
  • Support children and young people's speech, language and communication.

How will I learn? 

You will have information delivered by tutors as well as developing self-directed learning so that you can carry out your own research and enter into a productive group and paired discussions. You will demonstrate your learning and skills by producing work and evidence for your portfolio, which will be carried out as homework or practical work in the school setting.

What materials or equipment will I need to provide?

The most important resource you will have is your willingness to learn. You should also have a supply of pens and paper.

Your commitments as a learner 

To achieve success on the course you will need to:

  • Attend college and placement every week. If you need to miss a class, please let us know in advance, if possible.
  • You will need to ensure that you allow sufficient time for self-study and complete any homework set. You will be expected to complete all assessments and complete the full course. 
  • Complete the course.

DBS and Barring Service

DBS checks are carried out on everyone who works with, or trains to work with children, young people and vulnerable adults. BAES will carry out these checks before you start a work placement that is relevant to your classroom work course along with a right to work check.

For enrolment on classroom work courses and for your DBS check you must provide original approved documents, which give evidence of your identity and address.

To get a full DBS check you must have been a resident in this country for at least five years. If you have not been a resident for at least five years, you must also produce a Statement of Good Conduct (written in English) from your previous country BEFORE you can be enrolled onto a classroom work course.

If you have a criminal record, which may bar you from working with children and vulnerable adults, please discuss this with a member of staff before enrolling as all previous convictions and cautions will be disclosed and this could prevent you from completing your placement.

Interview and Initial Assessment

You will need to complete a written assessment and undertake a one to one discussion prior to enrolling onto a course. This is mandatory for all learners. Call our Information Line on 0121 303 4318 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to make an appointment.

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