19 Aug Deaf children in the East of England fall two grades behind at GCSE
Deaf children in the East of England are falling two grades behind their hearing classmates at GCSE, according to new analysis by the National Deaf Children’s Society.
The charity issued the warning after analysing the Department for Education’s 2018 exam results data, which showed that the region’s deaf children score an average grade of 3.84 across eight key subjects. For hearing children, this rises to 5.01.
Most deaf children in the East of England are also beginning their education having already fallen behind their new classmates. Just over one in three (41%) have achieved a good level of development in key areas like literacy, maths and communication by the time they start school, compared to three quarters (77%) of hearing children.
There are 4,471 deaf children in the East of England and the National Deaf Children’s Society says there’s no reason why any of them should under-achieve if they get the right support. However, these gaps in achievement show that they’re clearly not receiving it.
Specialist teachers for deaf children, who provide crucial support for these children and their families across the East of England, have fallen by 6% over the past seven years.
As a result, the charity is calling on the Government to get a grip on the situation and halt this crisis by funding the support every deaf child needs.
It says this should start with the introduction of a dedicated bursary to provide new specialist teachers in the East of England, enabling every deaf child to succeed at school.