Hearing Impairment Team

Hearing Support Service

The Hearing Support Service is part of Southwark Adults and Children’s Services. It also has a structural close links with Children &Young People’s Audiology Centre in St Thomas' Hospital. The team is based at Sunshine House, Southwark Children & Young People’s Development Centre, 27 Peckham Road, London SE5 8UH.

Our aim is to work creatively and effectively to enable children and young people, aged from birth to 25 years with hearing impairment, to make the most of their educational opportunities. We work closely in partnership with mainstream educational settings staff (nurseries, primary and secondary schools and 6 Forms), parents, carers audiology clinics, speech and language therapists, community paediatricians, social care and other agencies including voluntary organisations. Our base in Sunshine House further enhances close working with health, education and social care.

For children and young people we provide:

  • Assessment of functional hearing
  • Supporting access to the National Curriculum
  • Direct teaching and developing programme of support
  • Advice on adaptation to the teaching/listening environments
  • Advice and assistance to maintain personal amplification devices
  • Deaf Awareness- support on social development and self esteem

In some cases we teach specific skills including listening and communication skills, training in the use of residual hearing

For parents and carers we provide:

  • Contribution to formal assessment of educational needs
  • Help to access other support agencies
  • Support group for parents
  • Newsletter published three times a year
  • We listen!

For those working with children and young people with hearing impairment:

  • Disseminating good practice
  • Deaf awareness training for mainstream schools staff and peer groups
  • Advice and training to mainstream school teachers
  • Assistance and advice on the adaptation of curriculum materials

How this is provided:

We provide support in most appropriate setting. For under 5's children this includes :

  • In nurseries and day care centres
  • In the home

Pre-school children are offered visits at home and the nursery to provide support and guidance to parents/nursery staff. We develop an individual programme to facilitate the development of the child’s language and communication, and overall development, and to manage and support the use of amplification equipment. We liaise with health services and other educational departments to provide continuity of care.

For school age children:

Those at mainstream schools receive regular visits, the frequency of which is based on need. The visiting Teacher of the Deaf will assess the needs, monitor progress, advise mainstream colleagues, and be involved in the support and training of Learning Support Assistants as well as working directly with the pupils.

We attend audiology clinics and hospitals for multi-disciplinary meetings with both a clinical and educational focus.

How can I access this service?

Children with hearing impairment are normally referred by the audiology clinics or ENT departments following diagnosis. Audiology clinic will ask for your consent for your child to be referred to Hearing Support Service.

Parents and/or schools wishing for support for thier children and who have a confirmation of hearing loss should telephone to discuss the child’s needs. Referrals will be acknowledged on receipt of a completed form and an appointment made for an initial visit when the audiology information has been received.

We encourage parents and schools requiring further information and advice to talk to the Hearing Support Service.

Training provided:

The service provides training for mainstream schools staff on:

  • Deaf awareness
  • Classroom strategies and language modification
  • Personal amplification devices

Drop-in service

The service provides monthly “Coffee mornings” to support parents/carers of under 5s hearing impaired children. We offer after school trips to theatre and other activities for summer/winter party.

Southwark Hearing Support Service suppports the work of our local Children's Hearing Services Working Group (CHSWG) branch and encourage parents and other interested parties to join. CHDWG aims to ensure that all services designed to support deaf children and thier families work in a coordinated way.

If you wist to join this group please contact Southwark Hearning Support Service for more information.