Wales – registration

March 2016 

For the most up to date information on EWC regsitration, scroll down on the right to view our latest Q&A document based on questions put to us by learning support staff when we've been in schools.

January 2016

RCT Council to pay school assistant fees 

Rhondda Cynon Taf (RCT) Council has become the sixth Welsh authority to commit to paying the registration fees for its learning support workers after concerted lobbying by UNISON Cymru Wales.

Learning support workers or teaching assistants do all those vital but unheralded jobs in our schools, supporting Special Educational Needs children and underperforming children and helping teachers cope with large classes. From April 2016, all learning support workers in Wales will be required to be registered with the Education Workforce Council (EWC). The registration fee is an annual payment of £15 per person. As the union for school support staff, UNISON has been campaigning for local authorities to pay the registration fee for all learning support workers in Wales and reiterated this message recently to all Welsh Council leaders at a joint meeting.

Dean Price, UNISON RCT Branch Education Convenor said, “This is a really welcome morale boost for support workers employed across RCT schools. Without their dedication and commitment schools simply could not function and the council must be praised for making this commitment. UNISON has consistently argued that because registration is compulsory and the fact that RCT already pays a similar registration fee for teachers and social workers, this was the correct decision for the council to take.”

Jess Turner UNISON Cymru Wales Lead Organiser for Schools said, “Yet another council has recognised the need to pay the fees for its learning support workers, following similar decisions Cardiff, Bridgend, Swansea, Torfaen County and the Vale of Glamorgan. UNISON will continue our campaigning efforts to ensure learning support workers get the fair recognition they deserve with decent training, a uniform career structure and fair pay.”

Vale of Glamorgan Council to pay school assistant fees

UNISON Cymru Wales has warmly welcomed Vale of Glamorgan Council’s announcement that it is to pay the registration fees for its learning support workers after concerted lobbying by the union.

Learning support workers or teaching assistants do all those vital but unheralded jobs in our schools, supporting Special Educational Needs children and underperforming children and helping teachers cope with large classes. From April 2016, all learning support workers in Wales will be required to be registered with the Education Workforce Council (EWC). The registration fee is an annual payment of £15 per person. As the union for school support staff, UNISON has been campaigning for local authorities to pay the registration fee for all learning support workers in Wales and reiterated this message recently to all Welsh Council leaders at a joint meeting. 

Glenn Pappas, UNISON Vale of Glamorgan Branch Secretary, said,

“This is great news and a testament to dedicated UNISON campaigning.  A registration fee of £15 when you are on a low paid term time only contract is a lot of money for people to be expected to pay.”  

Jess Turner UNISON Cymru/Wales Lead Organiser for Schools said,

“Councillor Chris Elmore, Cabinet member for Children's Services and Schools and his colleagues must be commended for their decision. The Vale of Glamorgan follows Cardiff and Bridgend Councils in committing to pay the levy and we call upon other local authorities to follow suit. UNISON will continue our campaigning efforts to ensure learning support workers get the fair recognition they deserve with decent training, a uniform career structure and fair pay.”

November 2015

EWC publish finalised employer guidance for school learning support workers

It is vital that schools fully understand each of the roles undertaken by their school support workers, to ensure that individuals are appropriately registered with the EWC.  UNISON made a strong case to the EWC to amend their guidance, which has now been accepted and amended as follows:

“A key consideration for employers in determining whether registration is a requirement is the role the individual is actually undertaking rather than their job title. It should be noted that the Welsh Government’s expectation is that anybody in the “No” list should not be engaged in learning support activities, as defined under the relevant subordinate legislation”.

To view the full 'Employer Guidance for School Learning Support Workers', click here.

UNISON Professional Registration Bulletin - Issue 1

UNISON members received their first UNISON Professional Registration Bulletin providing information on the latest developments relating to the EWC and registration. 

To view the bulletin, click here.

October 2015 

Local authorities urged to pay school assistants' registration

UNISON Head of Local Government - Dominic Macaskill, has written to all Council leaders urging them to pay the £15 registration fee for all registered school support staff. 

To view the letter, click here.