It’s obvious that Kayleigh’s Primary School education had a huge impact on her. So much so that she’s returned to her former school to as a Teaching Assistant Apprentice thanks to a pioneering scheme delivered by Youthforce.
Working in partnership with Wimborne Infant School, Youthforce has developed the Teaching Assistant Apprenticeship. The scheme has allowed Kayleigh to benefit from the unique opportunity to gain skills, knowledge and experience in education whilst earning a wage through the apprentice route.
“Right from day one I’ve felt like part of the team” comments Kayleigh. “I’m not treated as a young worker, but part of the teaching staff.” This approach by Wimborne has meant Kayleigh has quickly settled into life at the School. One of the things that has been hard for Kayleigh is the hard pace of life in the school “Going from working and studying part-time to working in a school is a big change. There isn’t time to stop, but I like that. You’re always on the go.”
Six months into her apprenticeship and Kayleigh’s experience has been wide and varied. She has found herself supporting teaching in a number of different classes, supporting children with learning difficulties one-to-one and even came through a grilling with an OFSTED inspector during the school’s recent successful inspection.
Whilst she talks about the challenge of working in a busy Infant School her love of the job is already clear to see. “I love this job. You laugh so much. I have a great connection with the children.”
Julie Cragg, Head Teacher at Wimborne Infants has been hugely impressed by Kayleigh and the Youthforce Apprentice programme.
“The whole process has been really positive.” comments Julie.
“Youthforce have provided full professional support both in the interview and selection process and also in their support of Kayleigh. Kayleigh is just what I was looking for, she is so keen to learn and is very much a part of the team and is staying with us for the next level of her training next year. I would recommend having an apprentice to anyone, to the point that I am going to take on a second one this September.”