Bus and Playground Duty for Teacher Aides

Version Number

2.1

Implementation Date

5/12/2014

Scope

All state schools

Purpose

​Outlines the conditions under which Teacher Aides can be timetabled to provide supervision of students for bus and playground duty and details responsibilities of Principals, Teachers and Teacher Aides, and required training.

Overview

Responsibilities

Principals:

  • determine appropriate mix of Teacher and Teacher Aides to perform bus and playground duties in accordance with relevant consultative arrangements
  • evaluate physical attributes of duty areas to ensure Teacher Aides are able to maintain safety whilst supervising students and coordinate the risk assessment process, including consultation with all affected employee groups
  • develop action plans to minimise identified risks and prevent recurrence of dangerous events
  • determine and implement, through consultation, effective procedures for Teacher Aides on duty to summon assistance in an emergency, with back up for times when the primary respondent is unavailable
  • ensure all Teacher Aides rostered for supervision of students on the playground and at bus stops are trained in supportive behaviour management techniques suited to situations outside the classroom as developed in the school’s Responsible Behaviour Plan for Students
  • utilise accumulated time and/or student free days to train Teacher Aides
  • make relevant information that may influence dealings with specific students, available to Teacher Aides before they begin playground or bus duty
  • monitor rostering arrangements to ensure that Teacher Aides are rostered to supervise students in those age groups with which they are familiar
  • ensure that where a Teacher Aide is rostered for duty unaccompanied by a Teacher, ready access to a member of the teaching staff or school administration is available
  • comply with duty statements in Teacher Aide work profiles when determining duty rosters for bus and playground duties
  • ensure that any instances of violence or assault on Teacher Aides are recorded on School Management System in accordance with Health and Safety Incident Recording, Notification and Management
  • arrange for debriefing and support for Teacher Aides who have been involved in violent or crisis situations
  • ensure an appropriate reporting process for faulty operation (including replacement of batteries) in mobile communication equipment. The Workplace Health and Safety Officer or a suitable delegate reviews this process on a regular basis
  • conduct regular reviews of playground and bus duty issues and communicate the outcomes of such reviews with all affected employees
  • ensure that Teacher Aides performing bus and playground duties have access to departmental policy Indemnities and Legal Assistance to State Employees.

Business Service Managers:

  • work collaboratively with school management and Teacher Aides to develop rosters for bus and playground duty
  • ensure that the school’s Responsible Behaviour Plan for Students is made available to all employees
  • work collaboratively with school management and Teacher Aides to ensure that appropriate training in behaviour management techniques (specifically for use outside the classroom) is made available to all employees required to perform bus and playground duty
  • record on School Management System any instances of violence or assault on Teacher Aides in accordance with Health and Safety Incident Recording, Notification and Management
  • ensure that Teacher Aides performing bus and playground duties have access to departmental policy Indemnities and Legal Assistance to State Employees.

Teacher Aides:

  • participate in consultation with principals to assess potential risks involved with bus and playground duty at the school site
  • participate in training in behaviour management techniques specific to non-classroom situations
  • attend training sessions designed to enhance supervision and supportive behaviour management skills
  • report to the Principal or nominated delegate any ongoing problems relating to particular playground and/or bus supervision duties
  • take an active role in consultation processes to help identify issues and determine solutions for problems encountered on playground and bus duties
  • access information provided daily regarding specific situations that may affect students’ interactions inside or outside school grounds
  • attend for duties at the allocated time
  • use provided communications equipment according to manufacturer’s and school usage instructions
  • report faulty communications equipment at the earliest opportunity
  • utilise supportive behaviour management techniques developed for use outside classrooms in accordance with training provided and the school’s Responsible Behaviour Plan for Students
  • adhere to first aid practices within the school.

Process

​The process for managing bus and playground supervision activities for Teacher Aides is determined at the school level through a consultation process with all affected employees.

A risk identification/analysis to determine risks associated with activities in the playground and at bus stops is undertaken during the initial stage of the consultation process.

An action plan to minimise the risks identified is developed in consultation with all affected employees.

As an essential component of the action plan, Teacher Aides performing bus and playground duties are trained in supportive behaviour management techniques designed for use outside the classroom. These techniques will be identified in the school’s Responsible Behaviour Plan for Students.

Identical training is provided for Teachers and Teacher Aides, where appropriate, so that consistency is maintained for students.

Essential components of training include the following:

  • how to use body language and non-verbal cues to influence student behaviour
  • giving clear directions
  • setting boundaries
  • how to use tone of voice to reinforce directions
  • where to access necessary information before going on duty
  • how to contact administration when help is urgently required
  • where and how to raise any issue of concern that is beyond the Teacher Aide’s control
  • recording of injuries and assaults in accordance with Health and Safety Incident Recording, Notification and Management
  • risk assessment - including the use of scanning for visual/auditory clues to potential problems
  • strategies to support positive behaviour and to implement consequences for inappropriate behaviour in a controlled manner, in accordance with the school Responsible Behaviour Plan for Students
  • strategies for the identification of, and defusing potential incidents
  • age appropriate interventions and procedures to address critical situations such as bullying, fighting and any behaviour that threatens the safety of students and/or staff
  • emergency procedures requiring lock down or evacuation while students are out of classes
  • responses to accidents and illness
  • privacy requirements for handling confidential student information
  • the obligations of a Teacher Aide on duty when a rostered member of staff fails to appear for the subsequent duty
  • options for alternative activities for students having difficulties in the playground
  • how to deal with intruders.

Management of playground and bus duty issues within the Responsible Behaviour Plan for Students will be regularly addressed as part of each school’s collaborative planning and review processes. The school’s Responsible Behaviour Plans for Students is available to and discussed with all staff, including Teacher Aides, undertaking playground and bus duties.

Other than in exceptional circumstances or where operational factors can be demonstrated, in P-10, P-12 and other multi-age group schools, Teacher Aides are rostered to supervise students in those age groups with which they are familiar, e.g. Teacher Aides who work in early education environments are not asked to supervise high school students and vice versa.

Online Resources

Review Date

16/02/2013
Attribution CC BY

​For the purposes of this procedure:

Bus duty
The supervision of students, who must wait for public transport. Bus duty involves responsibility for the safety and welfare of students waiting inside school grounds and/or at bus stops outside the school grounds, until the scheduled services arrive and all students have boarded the buses. In some cases, this duty may involve supervising students using taxis or trains.

Playground duty
A set period of time when a teacher aide is rostered to supervise students outside class time. ’Playground duty’ may include supervision of students in eating areas, in the library, on school ovals, using installed playground equipment and in informal groups. It may also include the supervision of children waiting for parents to pick them up.

Risk Analysis
For further information about risk analysis and management processes please refer to Risk Management.

Supervision
Monitoring students and the environment to ensure physical and emotional security and socially acceptable behaviour and, when required, providing a timely, appropriate response to illness, injury, inappropriate or threatening behaviour, or danger.