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£1.5m to Develop Family Sign Language Curriculum

£1.5m to Develop Family Sign Language Curriculum

Deaf children and their families who choose to communicate using British Sign Language (BSL) currently have no curriculum that specifically meets their needs. Currently available BSL examinations are based around signs appropriate to adult life and interactions but do not include the signs and phrases needed for telling nursery rhymes, fairy stories, playing make-believe games or many other everyday family activities. The family sign language curriculum will be developed to respond to the specific need for content relevant to family life. The curriculum will help parents, deaf children, their siblings and extended family communicate effectively and learn together.

NDCS will develop the family sign language curriculum in consultation with parents, BSL tutors and other professionals working with deaf children. The curriculum will take into account course length, the age-appropriateness of the language and how the curriculum will be delivered via trained BSL tutors.

David Tee, NDCS Director of Projects and Development, comments:
"In 2002 NDCS successfully piloted family sign language courses and has been lobbying the government for help in developing a family sign language curriculum ever since. We are delighted that the Department for Work and Pensions has decided to fund this vital and exciting project."

Announced by the Government in National Deaf Awareness Week, NDCS is one of ten organisations the DWP intends to award £1.5million to for projects supporting the recognition of BSL.

- Further information about he National Deaf Children's Society


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