Education Support - Classroom Assistant

  • Victoria State Government - Education and Training
  • Port Melbourne VIC 3207, Australia
  • 06 Apr, 2021

Job Description

Job ID: 1223056

Location Profile

Port Phillip Specialist School is a dual-mode specialist school catering for a diverse range of students aged 2.8 to 18 years. Our student population includes students with a mild to severe intellectual disabilities. A number of our students also have co-occurring autism spectrum disorders, medical or physical disabilities. PPSS is recognised as a leader in providing educational, health and welfare services to students and their families.

At Port Phillip Specialist School we use an arts-based practice to support our students in achieving their goals. This means we use the engaging power of arts (visual & performing), dance, drama, music, physical education and technology (computers, iPads, interactive whiteboards) to have our students achieve success in the fundamental skills as outlined in the Victorian Curriculum. We also ensure an emphasis on English (Communication, Reading & Writing), Mathematics, The Humanities, Science, and Technology. We place an emphasis on personal and social capabilities as well as intercultural, ethical and thinking. We teach independent living skills such as personal care, meal preparation and social skills. In addition, we adjust each student’s individual program through the Individual Learning Program (ILP) process to adjust and accommodate programs to meet the needs of the student. The arts are the primary delivery tool with a focus on developing each student’s functional capability in English literacy and numeracy. It is our continuing priority to provide a rigorous learning experience for all students that is delivered in a manner that draws the best out of each student. This is the reason for, and the power of an arts-based curriculum.

The school is acknowledged as leading the way in integrated service provision. We present a new and integrated approach to structuring educational, medical, paramedical and mental health services to maximize the available resources and outcomes for students and the broader community. The Integrated Services Team reviews programs and progress for each student during the year. The therapy members ensure that teachers are using evidenced-based “best practice models’ for improving the skills of our students. As a result of our unique approach using Integrated Services and Visual and Performing Arts, the school receives enrolment enquiries both nationally and internationally.

In 2012, a book was published by ACER Press, about the uniqueness of the school. “An Extraordinary School: Re-modelling Special Education”. This book tells the story of our unique Integrated Services model and arts-based approach to engagement and teaching / learning. There is also a 60-minute documentary about the school called “Dare to be Different”. The book and documentary have provided extensive media interest in our school and our methods. We continue to explore the boundaries of what is possible in order to provide the best possible learning environment for our students with special needs. 

Selection Criteria

SC1 Capacity to work with students with challenging behaviours.

SC2 Capacity to work with High Support Needs students and utilise Manual Handling and Health Care Plans.

SC3 Capacity to undertake routine support tasks across a range of functions in one or more work areas within a school environment.

SC4 Demonstrated capacity to communicate effectively with members of the school community including students and the capacity to provide support and/or attendant care to students where necessary.

SC5 Demonstrated proficiency in the use of office systems, software or technical equipment as relevant to the position.

SC6 Capacity to work cooperatively with a range of people including teachers, education support, students and parents.

SC7 A commitment to professional learning and growth.


Undertakes routine tasks that are usually carried out under close supervision and direction. Work that carries some degree of independence will generally involve a limited number of tasks performed on a regular basis where priorities are clear, procedures are well established and direction is readily available.

Work has little scope for deviation. Problems can usually be solved by reference to well documented procedures and instructions and clearly established practices. Deviation from established procedures will require reference to others for guidance and direction. Assistance is readily available when problems arise. An experienced employee at range 1 will exercise limited judgement within clearly defined guidelines and well established practices that relate specifically to the tasks performed.

Does not carry responsibility for the work of others. More experienced employees will provide basic guidance and advice to others relating to tasks within the work area.

An education support class position supports the educational services being provided to students, but must not include duties of teaching as defined in clause 2.6.1 of the Education and Training Reform Act 2006 (Vic) or its successor. Supervision of students cannot be required except where it is an integral part of the employee's position or involves supervision of students individually or in small groups, in controlled circumstances, where the responsibility for students remains clearly with a teacher.

Qualification requirements do not operate at range 1. Certification requirements may be required to legally perform specific tasks - e.g. driver's licence, first aid, safe food handling.


  • Assist students on an individual or group basis in specific learning areas.
  • Assist with the communication between students and teachers, particularly the interpretation of instructions.
  • Provide basic physical and emotional care for students.
  • Participate in team meetings.
  • Assist with toileting, meals, lifting, and administration of medication to students requiring special care.
  • Assist with the supervision of pupils in playgrounds, at camps, on excursions, in sporting activities, therapy activities and life skills.
  • Assist in the preparation of student resources and equipment.
  • Prepare basic curriculum support resources.
  • Set up and put away equipment and materials in support of teaching programs.
  • Observe students and draw the attention of the teacher to them where necessary.
  • Participate in the monitoring and evaluation of programs and evaluation of individual student involvement and achievement.
  • Assist with communication between teachers and non-English speaking parents/students.
  • Assist in the translation of documents.
  • Assist students with the preparation and service of meals.
  • Ensure work areas and materials, equipment and appliances are maintained in a clean and ready to use condition.
  • Assist in the preparation of equipment and purchasing of materials and supplies as required.

Who May Apply

Individuals with the aptitude, experience and/or qualifications to fulfill the specific requirements of the position.