This year, £4m is being cut from deaf children’s education by Councils across the country. With central government cutting their grants to the bone, they are simply unable to continue providing the quality and quantity of services that they once did.
At the same time, the number of deaf children has risen, with an 11% increase from 2016 to 2017, and the number of teachers of the deaf has fallen, with 10% fewer since 2014. This is made worse by the fact that over half of the remaining teachers of the deaf are due to retire in the next 10 to 15 years, with no indication that there will be enough new specialist teachers coming through to replace them.
In response to this dire situation, the National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS) has requested an urgent meeting with Nadhim Zahawi MP, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Children and Families, to discuss and address these concerns.
I have written to Mr Zahawi on their behalf and called on him to meet with the NDCS and ensure that deaf children in this country do not receive a second class education.
He can do this by ensuring that central government funding keeps pace with the rise in demand for support for deaf children’s education, and taking action to train up the next generation of teachers of the deaf.