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Holy Family

Catholic Primary School

Living, Loving, Learning as followers of Jesus Christ

ELSA: Emotional Literacy Support

What is ELSA?


An ELSA in a school is an Emotional Literacy Support Assistant. There is a recognised training course aimed specifically at Teaching Assistants or other specialist school roles. ELSAs are specialists with a wealth of experience of working with  children and young people. ELSAs are trained and regularly supervised by Educational Psychologists. The course tends to be 6 full days and covers many areas from emotional literacy to active listening.


ELSAs must be supervised regularly by the Educational Psychologists who trained them. This supervision is key to good practice and allows the ELSA to bring up any problems with a group of other ELSAs along with the Educational Psychologist.


It is important that ELSAs work within the their scope of practice and only cover things they are trained to cover. Any concerns out of their scope of practice should be discussed with their Educational Psychologist and potentially referred on to outside agencies. ELSAs SUPPORT NOT FIX.


ELSAs are warm, kind and caring people who want to make children and young people feel happy in school. and to reach their potential socially, emotionally and academically. They understand the barriers to learning that some children and young people might have and can help them with this.

They can support the children and young person’s emotional development and help them cope with life’s challenges. ELSAs will also help children and young people to find solutions to problems they might have.

An ELSA is not there to fix problems but to help them find their own solutions and offer that important support to a child or young person.

Relationships are key in helping children and young people to feel safe and nurtured. ELSA is about creating a reflective space for the child or young person.


Our ELSA is Mrs Scott