I guess that this week is designed as an opportunity to make the hearing world more aware of challenges faced by d/Deaf people. This needs to be done by d/Deaf people.
I’m not d/Deaf, but I’m passionate about improving the lives of d/Deaf people, so I thought I’d do my bit to raise awareness of a fantastic group of people who are championing deaf education instead.
Last week I had the honour of being the inaugural speaker at the d/Deaf Teachers Of The Deaf (d/DTOD) group. This fantastic group of educators are d/Deaf and working within the sphere of d/Deaf education.
The group is made up of teachers working in Deaf schools and Deaf units in mainstream schools, d/Deaf academics working in universities across the UK, d/Deaf specialists working in peripatetic support services, teachers in training and more.
They are an incredibly open, welcoming and knowledgeable group of people. They are passionate about raising the profile of d/Deaf education across the UK.
I was invited to speak to the group about the revolutionary work that The Royal School for the Deaf Derby (RSDD) and YouTeachMe have been doing to improve Deaf teaching, to accelerate learning for d/Deaf youngsters, to improve professional development opportunities for d/Deaf teachers and support staff and to overcome language barriers to engage parents of Deaf children in their child’s learning.
Thankfully I was joined by Cathie and Lucy (teachers at the Royal School for the Deaf Derby), who spoke so powerfully about the positive impacts they had seen on their learners, families, colleagues and themselves.
When an experienced teacher tells 30+ other teachers that using YouTeachMe has ‘changed my whole perspective on teaching’, then you know it’s making a difference. There was real excitement about how innovation can make a difference and it was a pleasure to be part of it.
So this Deaf Awareness week, if you’re a d/Deaf educator, or you know someone who is, make them aware of the amazing d/DTOD group. They’d LOVE you to join them.
Author: Paul Rose