We have greatly benefited having another pair of hands in the team, and achieved more this year than we would have been able to otherwise.

Way 2 Work is an excellent service, and one which I hope to be able to continue to use.

Way2Work offers the apprentice a great support network outside of their workplace. Employers are offered a pre-screening of applicants this saves time and offers an effective method of recruitment .The support offered to our young person is exceptional and we know it helps builds confidence. Way2Work offer an excellent service to both young people and companies seeking to recruit.

“From a young age, I knew I wanted to develop a career within the education industry. Years later, I became a lunchtime supervisor at the school my children attended. I heard about an apprenticeship vacancy working as a one-to-one, whilst studying a Level 3 in Teaching and Learning. I applied for the role and was interviewed by Mary, and later Tara, who became my mentor on the course. After having another interview with my headteacher, I began my course in January 2020. 

I spent a few weeks getting to know the children in my class and the child I would be working with, before having a meeting with Tara and getting started on my coursework. Each of the units were sent over with plenty of time to complete the work, before being uploaded and signed off on my one-file. I was supported during the whole course by Tara; we had regular meetings and she was always on hand to answer any questions or offer any support that I needed. 

I really enjoyed the course as a whole; the learning-based part was interesting, and the practical side allowed me to put into practise what I had been learning about. I was challenged in various ways during my course; my experience with Autism was put to the test, including finding different ways of supporting a child who found learning hard, and figuring out what rewards and positive reinforcements worked. 

During my time as an apprentice, I was able to work across reception, as well as years 1 and 2. This was an incredible insight into the difference between EYFS and key stages; I learnt a variety of skills needed to assist a range of different children and needs. Being able to observe the way others responded to difficult behaviour was beneficial within my career – lots of these methods I have used and adapted as necessary even past qualifying. 

7 months on from my course finishing and being qualified, I am working as a teaching assistant in year 5; my next step in my career path is to study a Level 4 course to become a higher level TA.”

“I had been working as a Support Assistant in a primary school for a year before I started my Level 3 apprenticeship and felt I needed more training on improving my professional practice. I spoke to my Schools SENCO and she organised for me to start the Level 3 apprenticeship course with Way2Work. 

Tara came to my setting and explained to me what the apprenticeship involved and what was expected from me. She was so lovely and kind. Throughout the whole course she was in constant contact with me and I felt comfortable asking her anything! The assignments were interesting and engaging and clearly explained what was expected. I feel I have learnt so much from the apprenticeship and I really do feel my practice at work has greatly improved. I have found myself having to ask the teacher less of what I need to do as I now know what is expected from what I have learnt during the apprenticeship. 

I am now currently completing a Foundation Degree in Special Educational Needs and Inclusive Practice at university and hope to one day get a full time role working with children with Special Educational Needs.”

Alexandra School

The LSCB team were in need of additional support in the administration of key multi-agency safeguarding training and were lucky to be able to agree and offer an apprenticeship in conjunction with the wider Community and Partnerships Division. We have benefited enormously from this apprenticeship. 

We have been joined by a committed and insightful young person, Jay. He has been quick to pick up a range of tasks and is resourceful and flexible in his approach. His perspective on the work of the LSCB has been invaluable and has led to positive improvements both as a fresh pair of eyes and as a young person. His work and attitude have been praised by diverse colleagues and clients. 

As a team supporting an apprenticeship is complimentary to the LSCB’s vision of promoting positive outcomes for children and young people of Richmond. Co-managing this apprenticeship has also given us the opportunity to work collaboratively across our division in a new way and gain a better understanding of each others’ service areas, and to gain experience in supporting apprentices. 

In conclusion I would thoroughly recommend taking on an apprentice!

“After spending 2 years at college studying childcare, I always knew this is something that I wanted to do, so I decided to try something new and learn whilst being on the job which is the best decision I made.

After applying for a level 3 advanced apprentice teaching assistant, I was soon contacted by Mary for an interview to discuss it further then within a couple days I attended an interview at the primary school, later that week I received a call which informed me that I got the job. 

After settling into my new job, Tara came in to visit me to discuss how I would submit my work and the units that I would be writing about. She was so reassuring and made sure I understood. She always explained each unit well so I would know what to do. She was very quick at marking the work, and would often send me a few units at a time so I had plenty to get on with. She was also available for any questions I had and supported me the whole way.

Coming towards the end of my apprenticeship, Tara helped me in advance to search for a job so that I would have one in time for my end date. Luckily the school kept me on. I am now a qualified teaching assistant and within the future I aim to become a teacher.

Way2Work and Tara have helped and supported me so much. I thank you all!”

” My apprenticeship gave me a great starting point for my career, allowing me to explore a lot of different skills and gaining an in-depth understanding of different areas across Achieving for Children. I now work as a Business Support Officer which is extremely rewarding and varied each day.”

Achieving for Children