Hearing and vision
We are the Educational Team for Hearing and Vision (ETHV)
We offer a wide range of services to support children and young people who have been diagnosed with hearing and/or vision loss from birth to leaving school.
- two Qualified Teachers of the Deaf (QToD)
- one Teacher of the Deaf is a qualified Educational Audiologist and Early Years Practitioner for supporting babies with a hearing loss and their families
- one Qualified Teacher of the Visually Impaired (QTVI)
- one Qualified Registered Habilitation Specialist
- one Deaf Coach
- nine Specialist Teaching Assistants
- two Specialist Curriculum Support Staff
All of our team have current enhanced DBS status and adhere to Council policies and procedures for Safeguarding
We support families and settings with children and young people who have been medically diagnosed with either a hearing or vision loss.
We offer to support if a child or young person has been given at least one hearing aid, cochlear implant or bone anchored hearing aid (BAHA) or has a visual loss which cannot be corrected with prescription glasses.
We support children and young people across the range of educational placements including nurseries, mainstream and special schools including Academies. Support is offered term time during school hours.
As all children, young people, their families, schools and settings are different, the type and level of support offered will vary. The National Sensory Partnership National Sensory Partnership Eligibility Framework (PDF, 460 KB) is used to help us decide how much support is offered to each individual child or young person. This support is described as being either high, medium, low, monitor or advice.
The level of support is regularly monitored for any changes. Children and young people with a hearing or visual loss can face many unique challenges in accessing the curriculum and their environment. Our role is to identify those challenges and support those involved with the child or young person to overcome them.
Babies who are diagnosed with a permanent childhood hearing loss following Newborn Hearing Screening are referred to education within 24 hours of a diagnosis and contact made with the family within two days. Babies who are diagnosed with a permanent vision loss may be referred by an Ophthalmologist or Health Visitor. The team offer home-visiting to families, babies and preschool children where a permanent visual or hearing loss has been diagnosed.
Our vision is that every learner has the opportunity to develop their independence, self-esteem, achieve their full potential, and are ready for adult life.
What are our aims?
- we want children and young people to be successful, independent learners who are confident and self-reliant
- we want children and young people to achieve the best educational outcomes linked to national expectations for their level of development
- the team is committed to working in close partnership with parents, carers, other professionals and voluntary organisations, showing respect for individual values and without judgement
- as part of Early Support, we aim to provide families with high quality, unbiased information enabling them to make informed choices for their children
- to provide high quality support and enhance the educational opportunities for children and young people who have needs relating to hearing or visual loss
- to support the development of emotional well-being in children and young people with sensory loss to ensure they achieve their full potential socially and emotionally
- we consistently work within the safeguarding framework provided by the local authority
- we want all children and young people to be able to manage their own needs and learn ‘skills for life’ to ensure their safety and independent access in all aspects of daily living
The team works in closely with a range of other agencies, including organisations such as the:
- National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS)
- Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB)
- Blind Children’s Society
- National Sensory Loss Partnership (NatSIP)
Working with these organisations helps us to make sure that the needs of children and young people with a hearing or visual impaired and their families are met. A full list of our partners can be found in a section below.
Services provided – All phases
- Provision of unbiased information to families and other agencies
- Attendance where possible at the Paediatric Hearing Aid Review Clinic for the initial hearing aid fitting and subsequent reviews
- Liaison with Paediatric Ophthalmology teams
- Functional assessments of hearing or vision
- Advice on all levels of hearing and vision loss and reasonable adjustments that can be made.
- Specialist advice in the preparation of Education Health and Care Plans
- Liaison with Audiology and Ears, Nose and Throat (ENT) Departments, Ophthalmology and Optometry Departments
- Check hearing aids using an electro acoustic hearing aid analyser at least three times a year
- Liaison with Social Workers, Health Visitors, Speech and Language Therapists, Portage, Educational Psychologists etc.
- Attend the local Childrens Services Working Group (CHSWG) to help develop good working practice with other agencies and partners in North East Lincolnshire and nationally with regards to Deaf children
- Work with other Sensory teams nationally to ensure quality of provision and good practice is maintained in line with national expectation
- Use questionnaires with schools, children, young people and their families to find where additional support can be offered and to obtain feedback on services delivered
- Offer advice to schools regarding appropriate adaptations to enable accessibility to examinations in line with the Equality Act from Early Years to leaving school
- Provide BSL tuition during term times to families of Deaf children and young people
Services provided – Early years, before attending a school or setting
- Support and advice to parents of new born babies from point of diagnosis
- Support families to develop their child’s listening and vision skills
- Support families to meet other families and attend groups for Early Years
- Support families to record their baby’s achievements using a range of resources including Monitoring Protocol for Deaf Babies and Children or Early Years Journal for Visually Impaired Children
- Offer regular home visits as appropriate
- Access to signing support for families where children use British Sign Language or Sign Supported English as their primary language
Services provided – Settings and schools
- Practical advice to preschool settings and classroom teachers on teaching approaches to ensure access to the curriculum
- Regular monitoring and tracking of progress to inform planning and teaching programs
- Individual and small group teaching by specialist qualified staff from the ETHV to develop listening and communication skills, literacy, numeracy, mobility, independence and skills for life where assessed as appropriate
- Support from ETHV staff to deliver programs devised by Specialist Teachers from ETHV including: early communication, hearing aid care, developing early sensory skills, social and emotional well-being, independence, Information Technology (IT) and visual access skills where assessed as appropriate
- End of Key Stage outcomes data for children and young people with a hearing or vision loss is reported annually to NatSIP which is compared to outcomes nationally
- Professional development and training for settings and school staff in hearing and vision loss and reasonable adjustments in the classroom or setting. Training is generally free. Please see our Training Offers: Hearing (PDF) and Vision (PDF)
- Advice on acoustic conditions and the physical learning environment and how these can be improved
- Help schools to make all the necessary reasonable adjustments by offering Access Audits for Deaf and Visually impaired people. Please refer to our leaflet Environmental audit of accessibility to settings in respect of visual loss (PDF) and Access Audit for Deaf people in schools and settings (PDF)
- Promoting deaf and vision awareness amongst peer groups
For our team to be able to provide the above, we need schools and settings to work with us and to have read our leaflet Service Delivery Expectations with Schools and Settings (PDF, 175KB) .
Services provided – Transition
- Work closely together with children and young people, their families and other professionals at times of transition.
- Questionnaires to pupils and parents to support children and young people at times of transition
- Bespoke transition packages for children and young people who require it
- Habilitation support for pupils with a visual loss who require it
Services provided – Specialist equipment
- Provision of additional specialist equipment is loaned for those children and young people who are assessed to need it e.g. Radio Aid systems, low vision aids and specialist IT equipment
- Ensure that all specialist equipment is well maintained and appropriately used by the child or young person and school staff under a loan agreement
- Professional development and training for settings and school staff in use and management of specialist equipment, its safe storage and return arrangements
We will no longer be involved if:
- the child or young person moves out of North East Lincolnshire, attends a school outside of North East Lincolnshire or attends further or higher education
- the NatSIP Framework assessment indicates that support is no longer necessary
- the child or young person with a hearing loss is discharged from the Hearing Aid Review Clinic as they no longer need hearing aids
- the child or young person with a vision loss receives medical intervention which improves their vision
Read our leaflet Habilitation Education Leaflet for Parents and Schools (PDF) .
- We have a qualified registered Habilitation Specialist as part of the team who works alongside the QTVI to ensure the needs of all children and young people with a visual loss are met.
- Habilitation training covers early movement skills, sensory, spatial and body concepts, cane training, route learning and independent living skills.
- The Habilitation Specialist and the QTVI will work with families using ongoing assessments to ensure each individual child or young person has support at times appropriate to their developmental needs.
- Families with a child or young person who has a visual loss can access a Habilitation assessment as outlined in Who do I contact? and Who do we support? Sections above.
Parents of babies diagnosed with a permanent childhood hearing loss are given information on communication options for their child and family. Support is provided in the home to develop their preferred language. Options include; hearing aids, cochlear implants and sign language, British Sign Language (BSL) or Sign Supported English (SSE). It is recognised that as children develop their communication needs may alter.
All families of newly diagnosed deaf babies with a significant loss have access signing tuition. ETHV offers a non-examination family sign group which runs during term time only. Additional BSL support within the home is available for families of severely/profoundly deaf children up to the age of 3 years old from a Deaf Coach and Early Years Teacher of the Deaf. Families who choose to communicate using SSE/BSL with their child or young person is expected to make a commitment to learning and improving their signing skills.
Children and young people who use hearing and speech as their main mode of communication have their educational needs met in a North East Lincolnshire preschool or school settings with appropriate level of support as suggested by the NatSIP Framework.
Whether children and young people use hearing and speech or BSL/SSE and a total communication approach, we will support their educational achievements where possible in a North East Lincolnshire preschool or school setting, with the appropriate level of support as suggested by the their Educational Health and Care Plan.
Children and young people who use SSE/BSL as their main mode of communication may want or need a school setting with other SSE/BSL users. This might be at a School for the Deaf or another specialist provision.
Specialist equipment will be given to babies, children and young people who have been assessed to need them.
Theses may include:
- Radio Aid systems
- Direct Audio Input Connectors
- Low Vision Aids (LVA), Closed Circuit Television (CCTV)
- Specialist mobility equipment eg short cane/long cane
- Braille equipment and resources
- Modified print materials and tactile resources
- Information about hearing and visual loss
- Information to support the development of language including sign language
Advice to schools and settings on how to improve the listening environment for the benefit of all children, young people, staff and visitors.
The Educational Team for Hearing and Vision does not diagnose vision loss. Information on spotting the signs of a possible vision loss can be found in the PDF below.
The Educational Team for Hearing and Vision does not diagnose hearing loss. Information on spotting the signs of a possible hearing loss can be found in the PDF below.
Looking after hearing aids
Additional products and uses
This section is under development
Finding a course
Finding an interpreter
Books and resources
Follow along to our BSL tutorials.
This section is under development
If you suspect you, your child or young person, has a hearing or visual loss, you should contact your GP or other health professional in the first instance. They are the lead professional in the diagnostic process and will be able to signpost you to other services and support available. The Educational Team for Hearing and Vision does not diagnose hearing or vision loss.
If your child or young person has a diagnosed hearing or visual loss and you wish to learn more about the special educational provision, you should contact your school. Each school has a Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) who will be able to advise you further.
For children with a hearing loss, we accept new referrals from parents, Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) and Audiology departments, schools and settings where a child or young person has been diagnosed to have a hearing loss and has at least one hearing aid, BAHA or cochlear implant. Please contact us on the number above.
For children with a visual loss, we accept new referrals from parents, Ophthalmology and Optometry departments, schools and settings where a child or young person has been diagnosed with a vision loss that cannot be corrected by prescription glasses. Please contact us on the number above.
The ETHV adheres to Quality Standards for specialist teaching and support services set by NHS Professionals, NDCS, British Association for Teachers of the Deaf (BATOD), NatSIP and the Department for Education (DfE).
The ETHV submit Outcomes data to the Consortium for Research in Deaf Education and the NatSIP Benchmarking annual survey to inform future practice and provision.
We actively seek feedback from service users through the use of questionnaires, phone calls and meetings.
Compliments, complaints and suggestions
We are happy to receive compliments, complaints and suggestions by contacting us directly.
Alternatively, compliments, complaints and suggestions can also be made by visiting the North East Lincolnshire Council Website to pass on your comments. See our Complaints, compliments and suggestions page for details.
Children and young people with a hearing/visual loss and their families have been consulted in the preparation of this Local Offer.
BAHA – Bone Anchored Hearing Aid
BSL – British Sign Language
CHSWG – Childrens Services Working Group
CCTV – Closed Circuit Television
DfE – Department for Education
ENT – Ears, Nose and Throat department at the hospital
ETHV – Educational team for hearing and Vision
IT – Information Technology
LVA – Low Vision Aids
NatSIP – National Sensory Impairment Partnership
NDCS – National Deaf Children’s Society
QToD – Qualified Teacher of the Deaf
QTVI – Qualified Teacher of the Visually Impaired
RNIB – Royal National Institute for the Blind
SENCO – Special Educational Needs Coordinator (in a school or setting)
We work with a range of partners in North East Lincolnshire currently including:
- Diana Princess of Wales Hospital Grimsby
- Diana Princess of Wales Hospital Grimsby: New Born Hearing Screening, Diagnostic hearing tests and hearing aids
- Diana Princess of Wales Hospital Grimsby: ENT Department
- Diana Princess of Wales Hospital Grimsby: Speech and Language
- Diana Princess of Wales Hospital Grimsby: Ophthalmology
- Diana Princess of Wales Hospital Grimsby: Orthoptics
- Diana Princess of Wales Hospital Grimsby: Speech and Language Therapy
- Diana Princess of Wales Hospital Grimsby: Child Development Centre
- Health Visitors
- School Nursing team
- Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB)
- Social Care: Disability Team, Short Break Service, Fostering and Adoption Team, Young Carers, Youth Offending Service
- Young Minds Matter
- Local educational establishments: preschool settings, schools, academies, special schools and located provisions
- Local Education Support Services: Portage, Child Development Centre, Educational Psychology, Statutory Assessment and Review Team
- St Andrew’s Hospice
- Young Peoples Support Service
- Focus Independent Adult Social Work – For assistance with home independence aids
We work with a range of partners outside of North East Lincolnshire currently including:
- Royal National Institute for the Blind
- National Deaf Childrens Society
- Royal Society for the Blind
- National Blind Children’s Society
- Action for the Blind
- Blind Children UK
- VICTA- supporting visually impaired children
- Deaf Child and Adolescent Mental Health services (Deaf CAMHs)
- Sirius Secondary Academy, Hull
- Christopher Pickering Primary Academy, Hull
- Doncaster School for the Deaf
- Demeter House, Brigg
- Sheffield Children’s Hospital
- Nottingham Cochlear Implant Team
- IPASS, Hull for BSL support and Resource Library
- Signature for BSL courses
We apologise if we have overlooked any of our partners. If we have, please contact us and we will ensure you are included.
Educational Team for Hearing and Vision, Civic Offices, Knoll Street, Cleethorpes, DN35 8LN
Telephone: 01472 323465
Minicom for Deaf people: 01472 873986
Minicom Relay for hearing people: 18002 01472 873986
Opening times: Monday to Friday 8am to 4pm, except bank holidays. Term time only.