Hearing Impairment Centre
Sunshine Hearing Impairment Centre - Enhanced Specialist Teaching Arrangement
At Knollmead Primary School, we are proud to have Sunshine Hearing Impairment Enhanced Specialist Teaching Arrangement. We have capacity for 12 children from Nursery to Year 6, with severe to profound hearing loss. The majority of our children have an Education, Health and Care plan but it is possible for children to receive a place through the Local Authority with a view to requesting an EHCP. Children are part of the mainstream school and will attend mainstream classes. They are withdrawn for specialist teaching according to their need.
We adopt an oral/aural approach although if the needs of the child require an alternative approach, such as a Total Communication approach, this will also be provided. Teachers of the Deaf and the majority of Teaching Assistants are qualified up to at least Level 1 BSL.
There are two Teachers of the Deaf at Knollmead Primary School and 5 Teaching Assistants who are specialists in hearing impairments.
The school has a specialist HI Speech and Language Therapist who works in Sunshine on a weekly basis.
Teachers of the Deaf and/or the Speech and Language Therapist will carry out assessments with children to ensure that the specific needs of each child are identified and that the provision is appropriate. Provision of the children is monitored regularly to ensure that it is impactful.
Teachers of the Deaf carry out pre-and post-teaching, literacy, numeracy, comprehension groups and/or specific interventions according to the needs of the child. All sessions are either on a one to one basis or in small groups. Deaf awareness sessions take place with children in Key Stage 1 and 2.
Teaching Assistants support children in the classroom or carry out interventions outside of the mainstream classroom.
Teachers of the Deaf from Knollmead and/or the borough carry out Early Years sessions for children in the borough, in collaboration with the Speech and Language Therapist at Knollmead Primary School.
We have 2 acoustically treated rooms in the school and the majority of classrooms have a soundfield system. Children use an Assisted Listening Device, such as a radio aid.
All staff receive Deaf Awareness training when they begin working at Knollmead Primary School. They also receive ongoing advice and guidance according to the specific needs of the children in their class. Knollmead is part of the Coombe Academy Trust and Deaf Awareness training takes place for staff regularly at the Coombe Secondary Schools. More personalised training takes place with teachers of children who transition to the Coombe Secondary Schools from Knollmead Primary School.
Audiology equipment and tests
Each morning, the children’s equipment is checked and children are encouraged to develop knowledge and independence in connecting receivers, picking up and returning radio aids and taking care of their equipment. If there are any concerns regarding children’s equipment, staff will inform parents and contact the relevant hospital if appropriate.
Many of our children receive transport to school and we know that parents and carers will want to be kept up to date about their child’s day. We therefore have a Sunshine communication diary that is completed each day by either the Teacher of the Deaf or the HI Teaching Assistants.
We believe that trips and extra-curricular activities are extremely important in developing the children’s social, emotional well-being and awareness of the environment. We have a number of activities which take place in school, such as Deaf Cricket and Football, visits from the Listening Bus as well as excursions to a number of places either in the local area or further afield. Sunshine Hearing Impairment Centre also hosts Christmas and Summer parties for all children with hearing impairments in the borough and their parents and carers.
Links with Local Authority and Training
We have strong links with the Educational Service for Sensory Impairment and training takes place on a half termly basis for mainstream staff and parents from the borough at Knollmead Primary School.
If you have any questions please contact Ms Sam Salih, Teacher of the Deaf, Acting Assistant Head and SENCo.