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7-38: A New Academy Chapter


We have recently opened an exciting new chapter in our long history, launching 7-38 (7 day, 38 week) – an education and care provision for Deaf children.

Taking a unique collaborative approach, the Academy works holistically with parents and professionals to transform behaviour and most importantly relationships, enabling students to thrive both at the Academy and, crucially, when back in the family home.

The 7-38 provision is staffed by a dedicated team of specialist carers, all of whom have considerable experience in working directly with young people who have communication difficulties and behavioural problems.

We are conscious of the fact that each and every young person has an individual level of need. For this reason we staff the provision accordingly. There is a strong core team with the optimum ratio of staff to young people. However, there is never a set or limited amount of staff members supporting the core team. To ensure an excellent level of support, we have the flexibility to provide additional resources during challenging periods when necessary.

Why 7-38? 

7-38 has been developed for Deaf young people, their families and local authorities to explore an alternative avenue to 52-week care.

Usually, when a Deaf young person is struggling both at home and in the school environment, relationships have completely broken down and many local authorities see no other option than to place in to 52-week care. At the point 52-week care is considered an option, we suggest a final avenue should be explored; 7-38 provision at the Academy.

Our 7-38 provision is a cost-effective alternative placement route. The focus of 7-38 is to spend time on reengaging the deaf young person in both the school and family settings. The more success we have with the individual, the less specialist support they will require and consequently, the fees will reduce over time.

7-38 gives the Academy an incredible opportunity to work with the young person and their family/carers. For 38 weeks of the year, Deaf young people that meet the criteria* for this service could be placed with the Academy on a residential basis to follow a well-planned reengagement program into the school community. Our specialist team not only addresses educational issues but also work on general behavioural management and social development within the residential care environment.

The unique element of this service delivery is that during the other 14 weeks of the year, our team fully support and work with parents/guardians/carers/local authorities in relation to core issues associated with deafness, family breakdown and communication development. The 7-38 provision also provides guidance for parents to rebuild positive relationships with their son or daughter in the family environment.

We have worked with families on this basis and have achieved outstanding results to date.

The 7-38 Setting 

7-38 is a standalone provision based on Exeter Deaf Academy’s site.

The accommodation facilities comprise of a self-contained floor featuring a renovated living space with a modern kitchen and each young person has their own bedroom, which they can paint and personalise when they arrive.

To fully support the students’ progress throughout their placement, there are two designated staff sleeping rooms and a staff office for the 7-38 staff. We also have a tailor made classroom environment. This is specifically for the students’ planned reengagement to the wider school community should this be required.

Staff Training 

We are dedicated to securing the best possible future for our students.

To help achieve this, we are very selective within our recruitment process regarding the staff that can work on the 7-38 team. They are highly trained in the following areas:

  • Deaf Culture and Deaf Awareness
  • Advanced Behaviour Management
  • Personal Safety
  • Level 3 in Health and Social Care and Level 5 Diploma in Health and Social Care
  • Fully qualified in British Sign Language

All Academy Education and Care Staff are committed to achieving BSL Level 3. However, a number of our staff are proficient to BSL Level 6.

For further information about the Academy's 7-38 Provision, please contact Student Placement Officer Mark Frost - mfrost@exeterdeafacademy.ac.uk