On average, each deaf child in Australia is left AUD $10,000 short of public funding to access early intervention listening and spoken language services from birth to age three, with non-governmental organisations fundraising the balance, according to recent media reports.
— Caroline Carswell (@soundadvice_pro) October 4, 2017
Government Education On Early Intervention
Paul Forwood, CEO at First Voice, provider of infant auditory-verbal services to families, told a parliamentary inquiry that Australia’s National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIS):
“does not understand hearing loss in children and they do not understand the basic principles of effective early intervention for children who are deaf and hearing impaired to put them on the path that they should be entitled to choose and enjoy,”
These issues are global, with with families fundraising with hearing-and-speech entities worldwide for infants and children with digital hearing-devices and cochlear implants to access infant spoken-language intervention services before kindergarten starts. Since Australia is a world leader in AVT, reports like this confirm both the necessity of this infant investment – and the early intervention outcomes achieved by NGOs.
Hearing And Literacy Synergise
Undetected hearing issues can lead children to struggle to read and write at elementary education level due to being unable to understand “how sounds and language translate into words on a page“, according to researchers at Coventry University. Effectively, children need optimal hearing at their learning-to-read age, typically from birth to age four.