S. N. A. Policy

Aims:

To create a framework document which guides the whole school community on the role of the Special Needs Assistants in our school.

Rationale:

In our school we wish to ensure that the resource of having Special Needs Assistants is used to full potential for the benefit of:

  • The pupils assigned S.N.A.s.
  • The successful teaching and integration of pupils with special needs in class.
  • The successful integration of pupils with special needs in all school activities.
  • The successful teaching of the mainstream class in which the special needs pupils are in.
  • Supporting the school vision.

Objectives:

  1. To clarify for all S.N.A.s their role in the school.
  2. To clarify for all teachers the roll of an S.N.A. in the school.
  3. To clarify for all parents of special need pupils the roll of a S.N.A. in the school.
  4. To clarify for all pupils the roll of a S.N.A. in the school.
  5. To clarify for all parents the roll of a S.N.A. in the school.
  6. To clarify for all the school community the role of the S.N.A. in the school.
  7. To facilitate all S.N.A.s focussing their energy and time on the pupils they are assigned to care for.
  8. To facilitate all S.N.A.s focussing their energy and time on the tasks assigned them by the classroom teacher or principal.

Guidelines:

  1. In order to place the S.N.A. always in a caring role no S.N.A. shall punish or threaten punishment on pupils.
  2. In order to clarify for all pupils the differences between a teacher and a S.N.A. no S.N.A. should punish or threaten punishment on pupils.
  3. In order to allow the S.N.A.s to focus on their duties and maintain a consistently caring non-judgemental role, when an S.N.A. thinks children assigned to them or other children need correction from a teacher the S.N.A. can correct the child. If correction does not work the S.N.A. should inform either the class teacher, teacher on yard duty or the principal.
  4. No S.N.A. can ever be left in charge of a class. If a S.N.A. is in a classroom during break for example while the supervising teacher is in the corridor on patrol the teacher is deemed to be in charge of the class.  The S.N.A. is present in the room attending to the duties assigned to him or her.  If a teacher steps out of class for example to confer with a colleague or parent and a S.N.A. happens to be in the classroom the teacher is still deemed to be supervising.

Duties of Special Need Assistants:

The duties of S.N.A. are assigned by the Principal Teacher in accordance with circular 10/76:

The work of S.N.A.’s is directed and supervised by the Principal or through deputation by a teacher.

Circular Sp. Ed 07/02 Appendix 1 gives a suggested list of tasks that may be assigned to a S.N.A.  This list is a guide but is not definitive and as such the Principal reserves the right to assign other duties should he or she identify other tasks that would be undertaken by a S.N.A. in accordance with Circular 10/76.