Foundation Education

04 Jul 2023

How Martina’s school excursion led to a thriving career as a Teacher Aide

Teacher Aide

Martina could never have guessed that assisting on a class excursion for her son would lead to a long and meaningful career in Education Support. 

Helping to supervise the school excursion showed her how rewarding it could be to see the ‘children’s excitement for learning and enjoyment from class activities’. But Martina also admits that the prospect of working school hours played a major role in starting her career as a Teacher Aide. 

Martina McCluskey

‘The hours were great with a school-aged son at the start of my career,’ she says. 

‘After working in the role it became my passion to see children grow and develop and achieve goals they initially struggled with.’

Since that choice, Martina hasn’t looked back

It’s now been thirteen years that she’s been working in the education sector, where she’s witnessed the heart-warming growth, achievement and friendship-building of so many students. 

‘The relationships I have built with children and colleagues, the memories I have made will last forever.’  

Martina spent the latter part of her career working in a school for students with additional needs, where she was able to watch students go from struggling socially and finding it hard to build relationships to trusting her and expressing joy when they saw her.  

‘The feeling I felt and having built this relationship with the student to the point where they would seek me out in the playground is indescribable.’

From Teacher Aide to Trainer and Assessor

After thirteen rewarding years in the classroom, what made her turn to a career in Training and Assessing with Foundation Education? 

‘I worked in an Outside School Hours Care Service (OSHC) throughout my career and supported many juniors and trainees through their journey,’ she explains.

‘Witnessing their growth and confidence as they learnt… I realised that was the next step… to share my knowledge and passion with the educators of the future.’ 

Martina is one of our valued team members in Education Support and says her favourite part of the job is undoubtedly her students’ success.

That’s because having started her career with a family of her own, Martina understands all too well how difficult it can be to study with the pressures of family and work in the background.  

‘The most rewarding part has to be when I see them achieving the qualification when I know how hard they have worked and what sacrifices they have given, as our students usually have jobs and families.’ she says.

Martina's personalised student support

Day-to-day, Martina loves supporting her Education students with her philosophy that ‘education is not one-size-fits-all’, which includes finding the learning styles that work best for them. She’s also found that because she has so much experience behind her, she can give students a better way to understand new concepts.  

‘Visualising themselves in the classroom can really assist students to understand the assessments better.’

For any students looking to study to become a Teacher Aide, Martina encourages them enthusiastically. 

‘It’s one of the best decisions I ever made,’ she says. ‘You can work across many roles in a school, such as inclusion support officer and teacher’s aide, or in an OSHC. The sky is the limit.’ 

‘If you are passionate about helping children achieve their goals… you will love this career path.’ 

Ready to pursue a meaningful career as a Teacher Aide? See our course range here or call 1300 616 197 to speak with one of our friendly Careers Advisors. 


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