Sunshine - Specialist Resourced Provision for children who are deaf

We are very proud that during the Local Authority's external review of Sunshine, our Specialist Resourced Provision for pupils with hearing impairment, in February 2019, they recognised that our work in partnership with parents, carers and pupils; the quality of teaching, learning and assessment; personal development, behaviour and welfare; outcomes for pupils; the effectiveness of leadership and management and overall effectiveness, is outstanding.

At Knollmead Primary School, we are proud to have Sunshine, a Specialist Resourced Provision for children who are deaf. We have capacity for 12 children from Nursery to Year 6. The criteria for admission to the SRP is as follows:

  • First priority will be given to pupils with severe to profound bilateral hearing loss (71dB or more)

  • Second priority will be given to pupils with moderate bilateral hearing loss (41dB or more) with significant (2 years or more) language delay/disorder.

  • Pupils will have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) or, rarely, will be undergoing statutory assessment for an EHCP.

Children are part of the mainstream school and attend mainstream classes. They are withdrawn for specialist teaching according to their needs.

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. Some staff are fluent in BSL.


There are 3 Teachers of the Deaf at Knollmead Primary School and 5 Teaching Assistants who are specialists in supporting children who are deaf.

The school has 2 specialist Speech and Language Therapists who work in Sunshine on a weekly basis and a Speech and Language Therapy Assistant. Sunshine provision also has an ELSA who works with identified children.


Provision is in accordance with a child’s EHCP, if they have one and is carefully planned to meet the identified needs of each child.

Teachers of the Deaf and/or the Speech and Language Therapist also 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 and TAs carry out a number of interventions, which may include the following but are adapted according to each child:

  • pre-and post-teaching to ensure inclusion within mainstream lessons,

  • numeracy interventions

  • comprehension groups

  • Deaf awareness sessions

  • Social, emotional skills groups

  • Precision Teaching

  • OT

  • Teaching Assistants may support children in the classroom

All sessions are either on a one to one basis or in small groups.

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.

Staff Training

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 listening checks take place. 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.

Parent/Carer contact

Many of our children receive transport to school and we know that parents and carers 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 Teaching Assistants. The SRP Lead also keeps in regular contact with parents through phone calls, email or in person.


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 Specialist Resource Provision also hosts Christmas and Summer parties for all children who are deaf 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 Miss Rebecca Richards, Teacher of the Deaf and SRP Lead or Ms Sam Salih, Teacher of the Deaf, Trust Inclusion Lead and SENCo.