The National Deaf Childrens’ Society (NDCS) in the UK believes deaf children need to be better accommodated in the government’s 2020 strategy for the workforce dealing with children and young people.
NDCS’ key recommendations in its feedback on this strategy include:
- Better guidance for mainstream teachers working with deaf children
- An audit of the early years workforce so the needs of deaf children are met
- A government training programme for communication support workers
- Higher priority for deaf children in the newly created social care taskforce
NDCS also would like a ‘common core’ of skills & knowledge among workers in the new taskforce. This way, deaf awareness would be mainstreamed into the teaching workforce, in turn leading to higher educational attainment.
Teaching & training entitlements for every teacher working with a student who has additional needs was another recommendation NDCS made.
For example, newly qualified teachers about to take a moderately to profoundly deaf child in their class would be entitled to:
1) training for meeting the education needs of deaf children
2) access to specialist support to differentiate and plan the curriculum, set targets and work with the pupil on specific programmes
3) an audit of the classroom’s acoustics to improve the hearing environment
4) access to hearing technologies with specialist support for efficiency
5) deaf awareness training for all pupils in the child’s class or year group
6) availability of teaching assistants to give pupils access to the curriculum
7) where a child uses sign language, access to a communication support worker with the appropriate qualification to correctly interpret the lesson