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APPLICATION GUIDE

Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff March 2010


Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Contents Introduction

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The learning support role

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The context for supporting disabled learners

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Organisation of the document

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Section one: Elements

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Section two: Guidance on extent

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Introduction This document details the skills, knowledge and understanding expected of learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners. This application guide defines the skills, knowledge and understanding that those in a specialist learning support role need to support the skills development of disabled learners.

Learning support practitioners may use the guidance to:

The guide is an application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff. These standards describe, in generic terms, the skills, knowledge and attributes required of those who perform the wide variety of learning support roles undertaken with learners and employers.

• develop existing skills to meet the needs of learners.

An application guidance document (such as this) provides more detail for the standards where this is considered of value. These documents can be written for any suite of standards. They can be written for a particular context such as offender learning, a particular subject such as literacy, language and numeracy or for a particular group of learners or users, as in this document which relates to supporting disabled learners. Application guidance documents are produced through consultation with stakeholders and the relevant community of practice. They reflect a broad understanding of how the standards should be applied for a particular context, group of learners or subject.

• identify their continuing professional development (CPD) needs • plan the acquisition of new knowledge and skills

Learning providers, employers, staff development and HR managers may use the guidance to: • share and disseminate good practice • illustrate how the standards apply to supporting disabled learners • underpin staff training and CPD opportunities in relation to supporting disabled learners • inform recruitment and appraisal activities • promote quality improvement • motivate and assist their workforce to develop new skills. Awarding organisations and those who train learning support practitioners may use the guidance to: • support qualification development and associated guidance • map current training programmes and qualifications against the standards • inform curriculum development, delivery and assessment.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

The learning support role Lifelong Learning UK (LLUK) is continuing to develop and refine the description of the learning support role. The work of learning support practitioners was described early in the development of the first national occupational standards for learning support staff (finally approved in 2009). The description identified that learning support practitioners work under the direction of a person leading the learning. They contribute to the provision of learning opportunities that promote the achievement and progression of the learners they support. Important aspects of the role identified include: • to provide learning support for individuals and/or groups • to work with others to provide learning support • to promote learner independence and self-determination • to promote inclusion and participation. As part of the research to develop national occupational standards, Lifelong Learning UK identified two types of learning support role: • A generalist role: the practitioner has knowledge, understanding and skills across a wide range of provision and contributes to the support of learners with a range of differing needs and/or over a range of settings. • A specialist learning support role: the practitioner has expertise in learning support but also has knowledge, understanding and skills in a particular area or aspect of learning provision. The practitioner applies their expertise in learning support to this particular area or aspect of provision.

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Most responsibilities are common to both roles, but can be contextualised for the role with an area of specialism. Although the role is described as having an area of specialism this does not mean that learning support practitioners should be referred to as specialists. The level of responsibility and training expected of this role clearly does not warrant the use of this term. At the time of the consultation on the standards and the piloting of the role, representatives of learning providers were concerned that these practitioners should not be considered as specialists in the area or aspect of learning provision. In particular, there should be as clear a distinction as possible between this role and that of teachers in the same area of learning or aspect of provision. Learning support practitioners may carry out a broad range of support roles. For example, those providing learning support for disabled learners may also have care responsibilities. Where a combination of support roles is performed these should be underpinned by the standards taken from the appropriate specialism. A role combining learning support with personal care responsibilities would therefore be underpinned by the national occupational standards for learning support practitioners and the standards for care practitioners.


Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

The context for supporting disabled learners Disabled learners may be found in any setting and studying at any level. Their needs are often around access to learning and the adjustments that organisations, teachers, tutors, trainers, lecturers and learning support practitioners make to ensure they can engage fairly and effectively in learning. Disabled learners represent a broad and diverse group and include, but are not limited to, learners who have a sensory impairment, a mental health difficulty, a physical impairment and/or a learning disability. It is important to recognise that learners can be affected by more than one impairment and the impact on learning can vary greatly depending on the nature or extent of the impairments. Categorising learners by their disability is uncomfortable and somewhat arbitrary as it relies on labels and diagnoses. Terminology is also problematic and it is not the intention of this document to label learners. Too often disabled learners are defined by their impairment and are viewed in deficit terms. This document supports the social model of disability, which recognises that and it is society that erects barriers which exclude people from becoming full and equal members, rather than their impairment. Over the last 20 years disabled learners have increasingly engaged in learning opportunities in the lifelong learning sector. In 1996 Inclusive Learning (FEFC) was published following the work of the Tomlinson Committee. ‘Inclusive Learning’ was, and continues to be, defined as the greatest degree of match or fit between the individual learner’s requirements and the provision made for them. The Tomlinson Committee researched and mapped provision, as well as providing recommendations to improve educational opportunities for disabled learners. The resulting reports have had a significant impact on the sector and have shaped how provision has evolved over the years. Subsequent research and practice has further informed the field and there is now a substantial body of knowledge about supporting teaching and

learning, relating to disabled learners, for the sector to draw upon. This document is informed by the values inherent in a learner centred approach which strives to put the learner at the centre of the learning process, empowering them to determine their learning experiences and pathways. At the heart of this approach is the concept of working in partnership with the learner to tailor learning support in order to ensure it reflect the needs and wishes of the learners. A learning support practitioner will need to gather information from the learner, and appropriate others to support the person(s) leading the learning to identify the best strategies and resources for supporting the learning process. As with any learner, disabled learners engage in a range of programmes in a variety of settings. This guide is aimed at learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners through a range of programmes, including: • A targeted programme of learning, for example a course designed to meet the needs of those with a mental health difficulty or learners on a work based learning programme • A discrete programme of learning, for example those in a specialist or further education college who may be accessing independence, vocational or pre-employment programmes specifically geared to the needs of those with learning difficulties and/or disabilities. • A mainstream programme of learning, for example where a learner may be undertaking a vocational or academic course such as a Diploma in Sports and Leisure alongside nondisabled learners. • A blended programme of learning, for example a programme combining mainstream and discrete or targeted provision.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Organisation of the document The standards The National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff lists the skills, knowledge and understanding of all learning support practitioners. There are three standards in all, these are: Standard A: Providing learning support to individuals or groups of learners Standard B: Planning and assessing for learning support Standard C: Providing specialist learning support Standard A and standard B define the skills, knowledge and understanding of all learning support practitioners. Standard C defines the skills, knowledge and understanding of those in a specialist learning support role. The standards do not go as far as to list current knowledge and skills for any area of specialism, as there are so many different areas of specialism across the lifelong learning sector. In most cases there are recognised sources of information about the knowledge and understanding that is appropriate for learning support practitioners working in that area. Where there are no recognised sources of information it is helpful to provide more detail. LLUK supports this through guidance on applying the standards

Application of the standards This application guide provides detail of the skills, knowledge and understanding of learning support practitioners who support disabled learners. This detail is provided against the skills identified in standard C. In standard C the skills are referred to as performance criteria and there are seven in all. They are prefixed with CP and a number, for example ‘CP1 Use knowledge of learning support in their specialist area(s) to provide high quality learning support’. These performance criteria apply to learning support practitioners in any area of specialism.

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In sections one and two of this document you will find the performance criteria in the left hand column and the applied skill, knowledge and understanding in the right hand column. Applied skills, knowledge and understanding are detailed as elements. All elements are listed in section one for quick reference. Further guidance on extent of coverage for these elements is provided in section two.

Elements Elements have been developed to explain and illustrate how the generic performance criteria can be applied for learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners. Some of the performance criteria have one associated element, while others have more. No elements have been developed if little or nothing can be added by applying the statements to learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners. Where this is the case the words ‘informed by professional standards only’ indicate that a statement has no associated element.

Coding The elements are coded with the standard letter, linked with the associated performance criteria, and are in number sequence. For example, CP1.2DL Know and understand how disabilities can impact on learning. Letter C identifies the standard, the number 1 relates to performance criteria 1, and the number 2 identifies this is the second element for this particular performance criteria. DL is a suffix to indicate this is an element from the application guide for those supporting disabled learners.


Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Guidance on extent Extent of coverage for each element is given in section two of the document. This has been developed through consultation with stakeholders and the community of practice. This is not considered comprehensive or prescriptive. Learning support practitioners may need a broader or narrower range of applied skills, knowledge and understanding than is detailed here. This will be dependent on the learners they are working with and the context. It may appear that some of the element and extent statements are generic and are applicable to all learning support practitioners. However, where these are included it is because the extent and emphasis placed on that knowledge, understanding and practice is greater when working with disabled learners. The suggested extent of coverage for each element is written below the associated element as shown below. Standard statement

Element relating to supporting disabled learners

Learning support practitioners:

CP1.2DL (Element) Know and understand how disabilities can impact on learning.

CP1 Use knowledge of learning support in their specialist area(s) to provide high quality learning support.

Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: (Extent)

e l p m a Ex

(Performance criteria from the standards)

• Use a wide range of resources and aids including assistive technologies designed to support disabled learners. • Make reasonable adjustments to learning support activities and resources to enable all learners to participate in the learning programme. • Use a range of communication methods as directed by the person(s) leading the learning. • Use knowledge of disabilities to recognise and respond to the outward signs of learner stress and fatigue.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Section one: Elements

Standard C: Providing specialist learning support Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners

Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners are able to:

CP1.1DL Understand the nature, extent and boundaries of the learning support role in specialist area(s). CP1.2DL Know and understand how disabilities can impact on learning. CP1.3DL Know how to take account of learners’ backgrounds and their previous experiences of learning. CP1.4DL Know and understand the importance of respecting learners’ interests, aspirations and needs. CP1.5DL Know and understand the concept of inclusive learning and the importance of adopting learner centred approaches. CP1.6DL Know and understand the importance of working within a social model of disability. CP1.7DL Know and understand the importance of promoting equality and valuing diversity. CP1.8DL Know that different cultures have different concepts of disability and ways of defining disabilities. CP1.9DL Know the importance of liaising with teachers, care support workers and other specialist staff to identify appropriate learning support activities and resources. CP1.10DL Know how to support the risk assessment procedure. CP1.11DL Know how to use information about the learner in compliance with data protection legislation. CP1.12DL Know and understand the legal requirements that support the rights of learners.

CP1 Use knowledge of learning support in their specialist area(s) to provide high quality learning support.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners

CP2 Use their specialist knowledge to identify and address individual learners’ learning support needs.

CP2.1DL Know how to contribute to the learning assessment cycle. CP2.2DL Know how to use learner-centred approaches to actively involve learners in making decisions about the nature and level of the support they need. CP2.3DL Understand the importance of literacy, language, numeracy and ICT skills for inclusive and independent learning.

CP3 Use learning support activities relevant to their specialist area(s).

CP3.1DL Understand how to deliver learning support activities to meet the needs of disabled learners. CP3.2DL Know how to involve learners in activities which promote equality of opportunity between disabled and non-disabled learners. CP3.3DL Know how to adapt learning support activities to meet the needs of disabled learners. CP3.4DL Know and understand the distinction between providing learning support and providing care support.

CP4 Evaluate learner response to specialist learning support and use this information with colleagues in the planning of further support.

CP4.1DL Know how to contribute to the planning and review of learning support. CP4.2DL Know how to actively engage disabled learners in the evaluation process. CP4.3DL Know how to give feedback to disabled learners. CP4.4DL Know how to identify and respond to the changing support needs of disabled learners.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners

CP5 Support learners, colleagues and others in the selection, development, use and evaluation of resources in providing specialist support.

CP5.1DL Know how to select learning support resources to support disabled learners. CP5.2DL Know how to support learners in using learning resources. CP5.3DL Know how to contribute to the dissemination of effective practice.

CP6 Engage in professional development in specialist area(s) and in relevant learning support.

CP6.1DL Know how to apply the national occupational standards to working with disabled learners.

CP7 Support progression and the transition of the learner in the context of the specialist area(s).

CP7.1DL Know how to work with learners and others to identify new learning goals and possible progression routes. CP7.2DL Know how to prepare learners for transitions.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Section two: Guidance on extent

Standard C: Providing specialist learning support Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners

Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners are able to:

CP1.1DL Understand the nature, extent and boundaries of the learning support role in specialist area(s).

CP1 Use knowledge of learning support in their specialist area(s) to provide high quality learning support.

Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Work closely with the person(s) leading the learning. • Seek additional information and guidance when appropriate. • Work collaboratively with a range of internal and external colleagues. • Apply appropriate national occupational standards to tasks where a combination of support roles is undertaken, for example where there is a dual role of care and learning support. CP1.2DL Know and understand how disabilities can impact on learning. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use a wide range of resources and aids including assistive technologies designed to support disabled learners. • Make reasonable adjustments to learning support activities and resources to enable all learners to participate in the learning programme. • Use a range of communication methods as directed by the person(s) leading the learning. • Use knowledge of disabilities to recognise and respond to the outward signs of learner stress and fatigue.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners CP1.3DL Know how to take account of learners’ backgrounds and their previous experiences of learning. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Actively seek information about learners’ aspirations and learning support needs. • Communicate with the learner as well as about them to understand their backgrounds/ previous experiences of learning. • Read reports and other relevant documents (in compliance with data protection legislation) as directed by the person(s) leading the learning. • Speak to teaching and care support staff as appropriate. • Use knowledge of learners’ previous experiences to inform learning support strategies. CP1.4DL Know and understand the importance of respecting learners’ interests, aspirations and needs. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Identify and use learner’s preferred method of communication. • Provide meaningful opportunities for learners to make choices and express opinions. • Listen to learners and encourage them to express views, aspirations, interests and needs. • Negotiate learning support interventions with the learner. • Work with others to create opportunities for learners to become involved in the development of new learning opportunities.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners CP1.5DL Know and understand the concept of inclusive learning and the importance of adopting learner centred approaches. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Work with others to identify and overcome barriers to participation. • Contribute to the creation and maintenance of an inclusive learning environment. • Support the development of a learning environment where learners feel safe, secure and valued. • Contribute to individual learning plans. • Work with others to create opportunities for learners to widen their social networks and interactions. CP1.6DL Know and understand the importance of working within a social model of disability. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Consider and reflect on their own beliefs and assumptions about disabled learners. • Challenge negative assumptions and attitudes about what disabled learners can do and achieve. CP1.7DL Know and understand the importance of promoting equality and valuing diversity. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Actively support the promotion of equality of opportunity. • Use activities to encourage all learners to accept and celebrate diversity. • Challenge discriminatory practices.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners CP1.8DL Know that different cultures have different concepts of disability and ways of defining disabilities. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Bring disability and ethnicity considerations together when contributing to the assessment of learning support needs. • Seek information and guidance to ensure issues relating to ethnicity are addressed appropriately. • Remember the importance of ethnic identity and reflect ethnicity in the development of learning support activities. CP1.9DL Know the importance of liaising with teachers, care support workers and other specialist staff to identify appropriate learning support strategies and resources. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use appropriate channels and systems of communication. • Use information provided by others to develop or adapt learning support activities and resources. • Seek help from others when additional information or assistance is needed to support the learner and/or learning. • Support the development of new learning programmes.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners CP1.10DL Know how to support the risk assessment procedure. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use knowledge of disabilities to support the identification of potential risks. • Comply with the organisation’s risk assessment procedures. CP1.11DL Know how to use information about the learner in compliance with data protection legislation. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Provide information to colleagues and/or partner agencies in compliance with Data Protection Act 1998. • Recognise when a learner may need the support of an advocate to give their consent. CP1.12DL Know and understand the legal requirements that support the rights of learners. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Work within the legal and statutory requirements set out in the Learning and Skills Act 2000, the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) Part 4, the Disability Discrimination Act 2005 and the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2008. • Contribute to organisation’s disability discrimination action plan and reviews. • Support the promotion of equality of opportunity. • Work with colleagues to ensure reasonable adjustments are made to the learning environment.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners

CP2 Use their specialist knowledge to identify and address individual learners’ learning support needs.

CP2.1DL Know how to contribute to the learning assessment cycle. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Speak to learners to find out how their disability/disabilities affect their learning. • Use information gathered from colleagues and external agencies (as directed by the person(s) leading the learning) to inform and underpin the selection of learning support interventions. • Use informal observation techniques to support the assessment process. • Use technologies and assistive technology to help identify learning support needs. • Seek help from others when additional information or assistance is needed in order to support the learner and/or learning. CP2.2DL Know how to use learner-centred approaches to actively involve learners in making decisions about the nature and level of the support they need. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use communications methods particular to the needs of the learner for example communication passports, British Sign Language (BSL), Makaton, picture communication symbols and eye pointing. • Provide learners with a range of learning support options, for example adapting learning resources and materials, note taking, introducing computer technology and assistive technologies. • Encourage and assist learners to articulate their learning support needs and preferences. • Use person-centred learning plans for people with a learning disability as appropriate.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners CP2.3DL Understand the importance of literacy, language, numeracy and ICT skills for inclusive and independent learning. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Work with person(s) leading the learning and the learner to identify literacy, language, numeracy and ICT learning needs. • Select, use and adapt literacy, language, numeracy and ICT learning materials to meet the needs of disabled learners. • Embed the development of literacy, language, numeracy and ICT skills in learning support activities.

CP3 Use learning support activities relevant to their specialist area(s).

CP3.1DL Understand how to deliver learning support activities to meet the needs of disabled learners. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Work with person(s) leading the learning and liaise with them on a regular basis. • Use an agreed range of activities to support the learner in the achievement of their learning goal(s). • Take into account the learner’s stage of development, their predispositions and their capacities when selecting suitable learning support activities. • Use a range of activities and resources to meet the needs of individuals and/or groups of learners. • Use learning support activities which are purposeful. • Make adjustments to the learning environment and learning support activities to meet individual learning needs.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners • Explain the purpose of learning support activities in ways the learner can understand. • Use a range of activities to check understanding and whether learning has taken place. • Provide activities which build on learners’ achievements and present new and challenging goals. • Use learning support activities and resources which are authentic and promote the adult status of the learner. • Respond to the needs of learners on a session to session basis. CP3.2DL Know how to involve learners in activities which promote equality of opportunity between disabled and non-disabled learners. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Work with person(s) leading the learning and others to identify opportunities for learners to access non-disabled learner activities and environments. • Work with person(s) leading the learning and others to develop learning support strategies that combine learning in real life situations with learning in controlled or simulated environments. • Work with person(s) leading the learning and others to provide opportunities for learners to expand their social networks. • Encourage and assist learners to develop a range of strategies to enable them to organise and manage their own learning. • Use activities which support learners in the development of skills for everyday living and work.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners CP3.3DL Know how to adapt learning support activities to meet the needs of disabled learners. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use knowledge of disabilities to make appropriate adaptations to learning activities. • Make adaptations to the support activity quickly in response to learner needs. • Acknowledge the impact of medication and medical treatment on learning and make adjustments to learning support activities as appropriate. • Support learners in the management of their behaviour so they and others can actively participate in learning. CP3.4DL Know and understand the distinction between providing learning support and providing care support. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Work to the National Occupational Standards for learning support staff when providing learning support. • Work to the National Occupational Standards for Care when providing care support. • Refer personal care support needs to care support staff and/or learning support manager as appropriate. • Support learners with their money and personal belongings as necessary as directed by the person(s) leading the learning. • Support learners on work experience placements as directed by the person(s) leading the learning. • Accompany and support learners on educational visits as directed by the person(s) leading the learning. • Contribute to the pastoral care of learners.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners

CP4 Evaluate learner response to specialist learning support and use this information with colleagues in the planning of further support.

CP4.1DL Know how to contribute to the planning and review of learning support. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use knowledge of disabilities to contribute information and suggestions to inform the planning and review of learning support. • Contribute to the development and completion of customised individual learning plans. • Represent views of the learners, where appropriate, fairly and accurately. • Make use of observation skills to evaluate progress, achievements and the effectiveness of support strategies. CP4.2DL Know how to actively engage disabled learners in the evaluation process. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use learner’s preferred communication method to explain the purpose and importance of the evaluation process. • Work with person(s) leading the learning to select, adapt or develop appropriate evaluation methods to enable learners’ views and opinions to be captured. • Use activities to encourage learners to reflect regularly on their learning and the effectiveness of the learning support they receive. • Support the adaptation of organisation’s quality procedures to ensure the needs of all learners are met.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners CP4.3DL Know how to give feedback to disabled learners. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use learner’s preferred method of communication. • Use constructive feedback techniques to foster motivation and build confidence. CP4.4DL Know how to identify and respond to the changing support needs of disabled learners. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use evaluation feedback to identify new or changing learning support needs. • Monitor the effectiveness of learning support activities during each learning session. • Negotiate the introduction of new learning support activities and resources with learner and the person(s) leading the learning. • Refer any new personal care support needs to care support staff as appropriate.

CP5 Support learners, colleagues and others in the selection, development, use and evaluation of resources in providing specialist support.

CP5.1DL Know how to select learning support resources to support disabled learners. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use knowledge of the learner’s needs to select appropriate learning support resources. • Use a range of learning support resources including technologies and assistive technology to support the learning process. • Work with person(s) leading the learning to overcome any physical barriers to taking part in learning activities. • Keep up to date with new and emerging learning support techniques and resources.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners CP5.2DL Know how to support learners in using learning resources. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use the learner’s preferred method of communication to explain how the resource will benefit the learning process. • Demonstrate how the resource should be used. • Record learner response to using the resource. • Adapt resources in response to learners’ needs. • Seek guidance from person(s) leading the learning when developing new resources. • Evaluate the resource’s effectiveness against the achievement of learning goals and improvements in learner confidence and autonomy. CP5.3DL Know how to contribute to the dissemination of effective practice. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Utilise professional networks which provide opportunities for practitioners to receive and disseminate information in relation to supporting disabled learners.

CP6 Engage in professional development in specialist area(s) and in relevant learning support.

CP6.1DL Know how to apply the national occupational standards to working with disabled learners. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use the application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff for supporting disabled learners to identify professional development needs.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Performance criteria

Element relating to supporting disabled learners

CP7 Support progression and the transition of the learner in the context of the specialist area(s).

CP7.1DL Know how to work with learners and others to identify new learning goals and possible progression routes. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Use knowledge of disabilities to assist and encourage learners to think about future learning needs. • Work with others to identify new learning opportunities and/or work placements. CP7.2DL Know how to prepare learners for transitions. Learning support practitioners supporting disabled learners: • Work with others to develop taster sessions/days to provide learners with the opportunity to try out a range of new options. • Accompany learners on visits to new learning opportunities or work placements. • Work with others to develop opportunities for learners to gain travel skills. • Support the evaluation and review of transition support and activities.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Glossary: Glossary Learning support

Learning support contributes to the provision of inclusive learning opportunities. It enables identified learning needs to be met and learners’ independence, achievement and progression to be promoted.

Learning support practitioner

This term is used to denote a person who performs a learning support role. Learning support practitioners work directly with the learners, within the learning process and under the direction of the person(s) leading the learning.

Learning support practitioner supporting disabled learners

This term is used to denote a person who performs a learning support role with a specific focus on disabled learners. They work directly with the learners, within the learning process and under the direction of the person(s) leading the learning.

Assistive technologies

Computer hardware (such as switches) and software (such as screen readers and educational software) designed to make computers and learning accessible.

Inclusive learning

Term derived from Inclusive Learning (FEFC, 1996) which stated that all learners are entitled to a learning environment that matches their individual requirements.

Learner-centred

A process that places the learner at the centre of the learning journey.

Person(s) leading the learning

For the purposes of this document, the term person leading the learning has been used generically to represent teachers, tutors, trainers and lecturers working in the lifelong learning sector.

Qualifications This is a unit-based framework and is underpinned by a system of credit and Credit accumulation and transfer, enabling learners to ‘bank’, ‘build’ or ‘save’ credit Framework (QCF) awarded for achievement. There are 9 levels within the QCF covering entry level to level 8.

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Notes:

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Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

Notes:

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Learning support for disabled learners  

Learning support for disabled learners: Application of the National Occupational Standards for Learning Support Staff

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