Is learning support assistant relevant?

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ch00515
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Is learning support assistant relevant?

Post by ch00515 » Wed Jul 24, 2019 11:08 am

Hi,

I am really struggling to plan out my future in terms of aiming towards becoming a clinical psychologist.

I just graduated with a 1st in Psychology and as part of my degree did a 10 month placement at a day programme for young people at risk of Tier 4 hospital admission due to their mental health problems in which i helped to co-failictate therapy groups and had supervision from a clinical psychologist.

I have been applying to AP jobs and not really getting anywhere. I had one interview but got told I didn't have enough experience.

I went to two interviews to be a learning support assistant and have been offered both positions.

1. in a pupil referral unit for pupils expelled from mainstream school
2. a mainstream high school

HOWEVER, last night I got an offer for an interview for an AP post, but again I don't want to bank on getting this.

I have tried to push the two schools to wait for my reply but they really want an answer now...


I guess I am hinting at trying to establish whether you feel a LSA post would be considered experience for a clinical AP style role or whether it would be a waste of a year?

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hawke
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Re: Is learning support assistant relevant?

Post by hawke » Wed Jul 24, 2019 1:54 pm

I did some of my work experience as a pastoral worker in a mainstream secondary school. It's very helpful in terms of experience working with young people and I really valued the people skills I learned. But I didn't get any supervision or psychological training - in fact, with a psychology degree you will probably be the most knowledgeable person there.

lingua_franca
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Re: Is learning support assistant relevant?

Post by lingua_franca » Wed Jul 24, 2019 4:15 pm

PRUs are very interesting places to work. I'm not a qualified CP, so can't comment on how it would be perceived in applications, but as someone who now teaches in a special school for young people with mental health difficulties I can say that PRU work will give you chance to develop a lot of relevant skills in assessing and monitoring risk, building rapport with young people who may have few reasons to trust adults or to believe that change is possible for them, communicating effectively when emotions are running high, and responding positively to distressed and 'difficult' behaviour. All of these things can be extrapolated to other mental health settings. If you're getting AP interviews already, it's a positive sign.

You should take the job that you think you personally feel you will learn most from, but in your shoes I'd go with the PRU. You will meet a lot of young people who have been in the criminal justice system, or are in care, or have previously unmet special educational needs (not to mention young people who fit in all three of those categories). PRUs are (sadly) very good places to see first-hand how social and economic deprivation contribute to poor mental health, and being a massive community psychology fan, I wish everybody grasped that early in their career.
"Suppose a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?"
"Suppose it didn't," said Pooh, after careful thought.
Piglet was comforted by this.
- A.A. Milne.

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miriam
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Re: Is learning support assistant relevant?

Post by miriam » Thu Jul 25, 2019 9:53 am

I think it is relevant, so I'd accept, but then go to the AP interview and prioritise that if you get an offer.
Miriam

See my blog at http://clinpsyeye.wordpress.com

ch00515
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Joined: Sat May 25, 2019 11:38 am

Re: Is learning support assistant relevant?

Post by ch00515 » Thu Jul 25, 2019 11:03 am

Thank you for your advice.. I guess I am just panicking myself because they are both 12 month fixed contracts and I don't want to take them and then miss the chance to get other opportunities for over that year. :)

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miriam
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Re: Is learning support assistant relevant?

Post by miriam » Fri Jul 26, 2019 12:15 am

Fixed means their funding runs out, not that you can't leave earlier than the end point!
Miriam

See my blog at http://clinpsyeye.wordpress.com

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