HAST HI Provision

HAST runs the hearing impairment provision at Toddington St George, Parkfields Middle and Harlington Upper School.  There are places for 20 students with moderate to severe hearing losses, whose impairment has a significant impact on their speech, language, communication and social/emotional development.  In addition, some students also have additional needs.

Each provision school has a Teacher of the Deaf (ToD) and a team of communication support workers, and there is a nursery nurse based at the lower school supporting pre-school children.  The provision offers a total communication approach, so the students are supported by their preferred mode of communication, whether that is British Sign Language, sign-supported English or an oral approach.  The children wear a range of hearing aids and some have a cochlear implant.  They also benefit from radio systems and soundfield systems in the classrooms.

Pupils are drawn from Central Bedfordshire, but pupils from neighbouring authorities can be accepted after due consideration of their individual circumstances, and providing they meet the admissions criteria.

The children join their hearing peers in the classroom, with support from a communication support worker, but are withdrawn as part of their timetable to receive 1:1 support from the ToD or a support worker.  This support ranges from language, literacy and communication development, social skills and homework support depending on the age and needs of the individual.  All students receive regular visits from an educational audiologist, and a speech and language therapist monitors those with speech and language specified on their statements/EHC plans.

As the students move through the provision, they are supported to manage their own equipment, being taught how to check it and report errors.  The children are also helped to understand their deafness by following the Personal Understanding of Deafness Programme.

All students are encouraged to participate in extracurricular activities, from arts and sports to the Duke of Edinburgh Award.  There is also an opportunity for students to receive a recognised qualification in British Sign Language Level 1.  Transition between schools is supported; the teams at different schools work closely together to organise visits and deliver introductory lessons to familiarise the students within the new setting.  The upper school provision works closely with Bedford College Deaf Services as an alternative Post-16 provider.  Students are also supported at break and lunchtime depending on need, to support physical needs, play, social interactions and communication.  Some children are also supported at the end of the day to access their transport home.

Contact details:

Imelda Taylor - Senior Teacher of the Deaf for the HI provision, based at Toddington St George C of E School

Tel:  01525 872360, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Peripatetic Support

For students who are not part of the HAST HI provision, peripatetic ToDs visit the children in their schools to offer advice and support to teaching and support staff.  They continually monitor and make recommendations on specialist equipment, classroom acoustics and general access to the curriculum.  They also offer educational audiology support.