Category: National Deaf Children's Society

Posted on 04.05.2023

The National Deaf Children’s Society is one of 125 organisations who have signed an open letter to the Government to highlight the inadequacies in specialist support for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) in England.

A wide range of professionals, including Teachers of the Deaf, speech and language therapists and educational psychologists, play a vital role in supporting deaf children and young people in a largely hearing world. By identifying needs early, it can reduce the demand for more expensive support later in life, as well as helping more children to get the support they need to thrive in mainstream schools.

While the need for SEND specialists is increasing, the number of people being trained to meet demand is decreasing, with many existing experts leaving the public sector altogether. Teachers of the Deaf for example, who are vital in helping deaf children to develop in their early years, both academically and socially, have seen their numbers reduced by 19% over the last decade in England alone.

Herminia’s son, seven-year-old Marshall, was born partially deaf so specialist support for him has been crucial, as she explains:

“I don’t know what we would have done without specialist support, such as the Teacher of the Deaf. Because he has to work so much harder to concentrate, if adjustments weren’t made to his environment, I think he would have started to fall behind.”

The coalition of charities and other organisations is calling on the Government to clearly set out how it will address this specialist support crisis.

The National Deaf Children’s Society is the leading charity for deaf children.

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