Home Education & Learning SchoolScreener Webinar to Help Educators Support Students with Sensory Loss

SchoolScreener Webinar to Help Educators Support Students with Sensory Loss

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SchoolScreener for Schools has announced an invaluable webinar for educators in primary and secondary school settings entitled “Identify and Support Pupils with Hearing and Sight Loss”.

The free event takes place on Tuesday 7th December from 4:30–5:30pm, via the Mark Allen Group (MAG-TES SEND show and Publishers of Headteacher Update and SecEd).

Studies identify that as many as one in five children have some form of visual and/or hearing deficit with the potential to affect their educational, social, or behavioural development.

This has massive implications for children and schools, including inclusion costs and learning outcomes. This webinar will explore how schools can identify and subsequently support children with mild to moderate vision or hearing difficulties or those who are developing sight or hearing loss. Children’s hearing and sight change as they grow, so testing a child will tell you their status now but can’t predict the future.

The event will comprise a panel of experts from clinical academia and schools, which will:

  • Discuss how prevalent mild to moderate hearing and sight difficulties are and what form they can take, including how children’s vision and hearing can change over time.
  • The impact of Covid on pupils’ speech and language development and myopia (shortsightedness)
  • Consider the implications for educational and social development, including pupil welfare, academic progress, inclusion, and pastoral care. 
  • Discuss how the behaviour of children with undetected vision and/or hearing deficits can present as challenging behaviour in the school environment.
  • Discuss how children’s sight and hearing change as they develop. Children screened by the NHS at reception often use SchoolScreener software. However, even at reception, provision is patchy and does not include for vision screening for colorblindness or long sightedness, both of which have significant educational implications for children who are not identified with these conditions

The webinar will be hosted by Pete Henshaw, who has been a journalist for more than 25 years and has specialised in education for 18 of those. He has been the editor of SecEd since 2006 and Headteacher Update since 2012. He is co-host of the SecEd Podcast, SecEd and Headteacher Update webinars, and writes regularly for the magazines.

The clinicians on the panel will be:

  • Professor David Thomson, who has spent most of his professional life at City University London. He lectured in clinical optometry and visual perception before becoming the head of the department. In the 1990s, he recognised the potential of emerging computer and display technology for vision assessment and screening. He started to develop software, and today his software is used in thousands of clinics and schools worldwide. In 2016, Professor Thomson was elected a Life Fellow of the College of Optometrists for his outstanding contribution to the profession.
  • Dr Sebastian Hendricks is a consultant in paediatric audiovestibular medicine at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, NHS FT, Sight and Sound Centre. Sebastian has an MSc in audiovestibular medicine and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians as well as the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health. Sebastian has dual accreditation as a specialist in paediatrics and in audiovestibular medicine, the discipline specialising in hearing and balance problems.

This webinar aims to provide essential tools for educators in both primary and secondary settings to support pupils with hearing and/or sight issues, in order to ensure that those pupils can achieve their maximum potential in terms of academic achievement, social involvement, well-being and inclusion during their school careers.

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