Language assistants are usually employed for one academic year. The exact number of weeks depends on where your school is located within the UK.

A language assistant’s time can be spent in one school or across different primary and secondary schools. Find out more about sharing a language assistant.

How many hours do language assistants work?

Minimum/standard - 12 hours per week

Maximum - 18 hours per week

Any hours worked beyond 12 hours per week will be charged at a different fixed hourly rate, dependent on where your school is located (see below). Additional hours should be negotiated directly with your language assistant. 

You cannot offer a language assistant a lower allowance in return for fewer hours.

Salaries

The cost of employing a language assistant and their period of appointment depends on your school's location within the UK.

Salaries below are an indication of hosting costs from the 2019/2020 academic year.

England

2019/2020 Academic Year Rates

Gross monthly salary - £914.05 for a standard 12 hours per week

Standard fixed hourly rate - £13.77 for additional hours beyond the standard 12 hour period

Period of appointment: 35 weeks (1 October to 29 May). An extra month either side can be arranged by mutual agreement and at an additional cost.

Inner London

2019/2020 Academic Year Rates

Gross monthly salary - £1,150.39 for a standard 12 hours per week

Standard fixed hourly rate - £17.34 for additional hours beyond the standard 12 hour period

Period of appointment: 35 weeks (1 October to 29 May). An extra month either side can be arranged by mutual agreement and at an additional cost.

Outer London

2019/2020 Academic Year Rates

Gross monthly salary - £1,085.75 for a standard 12 hours per week

Standard fixed hourly rate - £16.38 for additional hours beyond the standard 12 hour period

Period of appointment: 35 weeks (1 October to 29 May). An extra month either side can be arranged by mutual agreement and at an additional cost.

London Fringe

2019/2020 Academic Year Rates

Gross monthly salary - £974.65 for a standard 12 hours per week

Standard fixed hourly rate - £14.72 for additional hours beyond the standard 12 hour period

Period of appointment: 35 weeks (1 October to 29 May). An extra month either side can be arranged by mutual agreement and at an additional cost.

Northern Ireland

2019/2020 Academic Year Rates

Gross monthly salary - £914.05 for a standard 12 hours per week

Standard fixed hourly rate - £13.77 for additional hours beyond the standard 12 hour period

Period of appointment: 39 weeks (1 September to 29 May). An extra month either side can be arranged by mutual agreement and at an additional cost.

Scotland

2019/2020 Academic Year Rates

Gross monthly salary - £914.05 for a standard 12 hours per week

Standard fixed hourly rate - £13.77 for additional hours beyond the standard 12 hour period

Period of appointment: 39 weeks (2 September - 29 May). An extra month either side can be arranged by mutual agreement and at an additional cost.

Wales

2019/2020 Academic Year Rates

Gross monthly salary - £914.05 for a standard 12 hours per week

Standard fixed hourly rate - £13.77 for additional hours beyond the standard 12 hour period

Period of appointment: 35 weeks (1 October to 29 May). An extra month either side can be arranged by mutual agreement and at an additional cost.

Mandarin Chinese language assistants

2019/2020 Academic Year Rates

Minimum annual cost - £4,090 (including IHS* surcharge)

Funding for the programme means that UK schools only pay assistants the National Living Wage (£8.21 in 2019) for a minimum of 12 hours a week worked, reducing costs dramatically.

Period of appointment: 41 weeks (mid-September to 30 June).

* Chinese language assistants coming to the UK on a visa are subject to a one-off £400 Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS). This charge should be reimbursed directly to the assistant by the UK host school or schools involved in the sharing arrangements.

Find out more about the process of bringing a Mandarin Chinese language assistant into your school.

Back to How the scheme works