Julie Hordern from Shropshire is a passionate and committed member of staff at Newtown Church of England Primary School in Wem, but she also has the distinction of being the first HLTA in England to build upon her HLTA status to gain a nationally recognised level 4 qualification for HLTAs.
The Ofqual approved Level 4 Certificate for Higher Level Teaching Assistants (QCF) recognises the skills developed by teaching assistants as they prepare to progress to the role of Higher Level Teaching Assistant and beyond. Developed by Gateway Qualifications with the support of the HLTA National Assessment Partnership (HNAP), it enhances the assessment process and provides successful learners with a nationally-recognised qualification as evidence of the skills they have gained.
Julie found the course challenging at times, but it allowed her to use her HLTA status documents for much of the qualification criteria as she had completed the HLTA status within the preceding 18 months, so that saved her some time. Despite moments when she feared she’d bitten off more than she could chew, Julie’s mentor Brendan was on hand to support and reassure her. Methodical planning was the key to fitting the coursework around her job and family life but having successfully completed the qualification Julie now feels it has reinvigorated her approach to work and that is having a positive impact on the school.
“I think it’s reawakened my passion for teaching and learning and has also ensured that I am up to date with school policies and current government legislation” she says. “Since gaining HLTA status I’m now able to support the school by covering classes for the teachers at short notice and my long term plan is to keep on doing this. The HLTA qualification helps to cement my knowledge and understanding and take my professional development one step further.”