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Supporting students in mainstream settings

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We can support deaf students in many different ways as well as them being full-time students at the Academy. Here are some of those different ways:

Communication Support Workers


The Academy supports deaf students in mainstream schools, colleges and universities in many different ways. We have over 30 Communication Support Workers, most of them having at least Level 3 BSL and some Level 6, who support deaf students in lessons and lectures. Strategies used may take a variety of forms depending on the needs and communication preferences of the deaf person. A CSW can support a deaf person by offering some or all of: British Sign Language, Sign Supported English, Lip speaking, Note-taking and Language modification. For more information about Communication Support Workers and how to book them, please click here.

Training mainstream teachers in deaf awareness

The Academy has deaf and hearing people available to run deaf awareness courses for schools, colleges, universities and other organisations and groups. The courses cover subjects like the causes of deafness, its consequences, how many people are deaf or hearing impaired and how hearing people can help themselves to be understood by deaf people.

Advisory service on curriculum and teaching techniques

The Academy has a high degree of expertise in teaching deaf students. We are very keen to share this expertise with other schools and colleges so they can be more effective in teaching deaf students. We can run whole-staff sessions as part of INSET training or offer advice, mentoring and support to individual teachers.

Split-placements at the Academy and local schools and colleges

Increasing numbers of our students have split placements with other schools and colleges. This enables them to go to their local school for some of the week and the Academy for the rest of the week. We also have more part-time residential students who stay for part of the week if their local school is too far away to commute daily. The split between the two schools depends on the individual student, and is agreed with the student, the other school, the parents and the local authority or LSC.  Each student at the Academy has an individual timetable, so we look to ensure wherever possible that the time spent at the Academy focuses on that student’s particular needs and abilities.