September 4, 2019 at 11:00 am
LSEs in Kindergarten 1 – Joint Press Release by MUT and MEDE
MEDE and MUT refer to the Class Support Learning Support Educators (LSE) to be introduced in Kindergarten 1 from the October 2019 intake and in subsequent years as stipulated in the Sectoral Agreement of 2017.
This introduction is in line with and builds upon the recommendations arising from the audit carried out by the European Agency, Education for All, Special Needs and Inclusive Education in Malta, External Audit Report (2014). In fact, amongst the various priority steps that the report recommends is “the re-allocation of LSAs from supporting individual learners to supporting teaching teams.” Thus, the Class Support LSE and the implementation of clause 16 of the Sectoral Agreement (2017) Enhancing Inclusivity is adhering to this recommendation whilst retaining the role of the LSE with Fulltime One-to-one statemented children.
MEDE and MUT hereby clarify the following implementation parameters for Kindergarten 1:
1. Fulltime One-to-one or Class Support is the new procedure for Official Statement of Support. Statements of Support issued prior to 1st September 2019 will remain with same provision.
2. Learners requiring Fulltime One-to-one support shall continue to benefit from the provision of an individual LSE as per procedure in place including IEPs, MAPs and duties as per Job description of LSEs.
3. A Class Support LSE is assigned to Kinder 1 classes when:
– the class size exceeds 12 learners;
– there are 3 students with a statement of Class Support (irrespective of class size);
4. Under the guidance of the KGE, the Class Support LSE will take care of the educational needs, IEPs, MAPs and other duties as per Job Description for up to three learners with Class Support. The LSE will also assist the class KGE with the educational needs of all other learners in class as per Job description of LSEs (not in cases of Fulltime One-to-one statement of needs).
5. In the circumstance that during the scholastic year a learner is given a Statement of Support, an additional Class Support LSE shall be assigned if the number of learners with a statement of support exceeds three, irrespective of class size. Therefore, provision will be:
• Fulltime One-to One, a LSE is assigned with the child on one to one basis and in accordance with the respective clauses;
• Provided that if during the scholastic year a group with a population exceeding 12 has one of the learners needing the provision of Fulltime One-to-One statement of needs, an additional LSE shall be assigned to this learner along with the already existing Class Support LSE
• Class Support, a LSE is assigned as applicable, in consultation with school’s SLT and in accordance with the respective clauses.
6. The Classification Exercise (group size and respective allocation of LSEs) shall be finalized (subject to new statementing after this date) with Heads of School by end of August of each year based on the Statement of Support issued by this date. In case/s of new statements issued on or after 1st September LSEs shall be assigned to statemented children in accordance with the respective clauses.
7. There shall be no change in current practice and duties of KGEs as curriculum leaders in relation to IEPs and MAPs.
8. School Leadership Teams (SLT) shall continue to carry out the internal exercise necessary in determining allocation of LSEs to Fulltime One-to-one and Class Support, taking into consideration all factors used in the past to allocate LSEs to statemented children.
9. It is agreed that these provisions shall not lead to loss of employment.
10. MEDE shall apply these guidelines in accordance with the Sectoral Agreement of 2017.
These implementation procedures shall be reviewed as required at the end of scholastic year 2019/2020 and during the following years to capture subsequent year groups in agreement between MEDE and MUT in accordance with the Sectoral Agreement of 2017.