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Communication Support Workers

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The Deaf Academy employs a team of Communication Support Workers (CSWs). CSWs support our students in a range of settings and so all members have BSL training to Level 3 and some with BSL Level 6.

Each CSW has a mentor and to maintain professional development, attends regular in-house training. This ensures the professional standard of the team remains current and of a high standard in accordance with the CSW Code of Practice.

CSW Support

The Deaf Academy’s team of CSWs can provide communication support to you on an individual basis or as part of a group with other Deaf students in mainstream educational settings such as in primary and secondary schools, colleges and universities and other educational organisations. They can also support you when you are taking exams, on school trips or if you are on work placements. Many CSWs are qualified to train mainstream Teachers, Lecturers, Employers and peers from the wider community in Deaf Awareness.

The Deaf Academy’s bilingual approach to learning means our CSWs role is complex, as many students require more than one form of support day-to-day. Whilst BSL is an important communication tool for many of our students, CSWs can also provide signed supported English, note taking, language modification and lip-speaking. This level of bespoke support will enable you to fully access educational information contained within your curriculum and any other educational or social environments, in a manner best suited to your individual needs.

Working collaboratively with other specialist staff across the Academy, such as Speech and Language Therapists and Educational Audiologists, CSWs can help you progress educationally, socially, linguistically and culturally. They provide the support that can empower your learning through a range of appropriate strategies for each context.

Promoting the Academy’s aim to support student self-sufficiency, CSWs will encourage you to make your own choices, even if they make the wrong choice; they will support you to learn from your mistakes and develop your independence.