A new home, a new language, a new family and a new career – these are just some of the challenges that Anica was able to meet with the support of her Disability Liaison Officer and deafConnectEd.
Anica was born overseas and moved to Australia to start a new life and a family with her Australian partner. Already fluent in her native sign language, Anica took to Auslan (Australian Sign Language) quickly and enrolled in a Cert III in Aged Care.
Although Anica’s studies were going really well, her progress faltered and the DLO contacted deafConnectEd concerned that she may withdraw. deafConnectEd was able to bring all the parties together to clarify course requirements, expectations and Anica’s changed support needs, helping her to get back on track and ultimately to graduate.
As the case study above demonstrates, we understand the complex challenges faced by disability support staff. We are funded to provide you with the support you need to meet those challenges.
- Telephone advice. If you have any questions, you can simply call us. Our staff have a wealth of experience on issues relating to deafness and hearing loss. We can therefore offer practical suggestions for reasonable adjustment in the classroom and information about support services such as Auslan interpreters and notetakers. We can also use our networks to find information or the experience of other training providers.
- Professional development programs for teachers, student support staff and administrators. Deafness and hearing loss are not always well understood and having an Auslan interpreter in the classroom for the first time can seem a challenge. Our tailored information sessions therefore provide staff with the opportunity to ask questions, clarify expectations and develop practical skills for an inclusive classroom. Sessions are delivered at no cost to the training provider.
- Notetaker training. In 2014 we are piloting an introductory online course for notetakers. A second unit has now also been developed, exploring additional skills and issues for notetakers. DLOs can contact deafConnectEd to organise access for support staff.
Although DLOs are often experienced and very aware of options to meet the needs of their deaf, deafblind and hard of hearing students, the following resources may be useful for DLOs when working with staff who are less experienced at working with deaf or hard of hearing students:
- Teachers’ Quick Reference Guide (webpage and pdf)
- The Role of the Notetaker in the VET sector (web page)
- Navigating TAFE: a guide for deaf and hard of hearing students:
The following simulations may also be useful when considering the potential impact of hearing loss on participation in classroom discussions and activities:
If you want to know more about hearing devices, this article provides a useful summary of the challenges:
Hearing Devices – Tools, Not Miracles.
There are also resources for interpreters and notetakers which can be found in the relevant section of our site and the Resources section.
Career and study planning
The following videos may also be useful when discussing employment options with students:
- Deaf people DO have interesting jobs! (video)
- Deaf people DO have interesting jobs! – Part 2 (video)
- Deaf people DO have interesting jobs in Darwin (video)
- JobAccess support for Auslan interpreting in the workplace (video)
- JobAccess service and Employee Assistance Fund (video)
Skills and Jobs Centres provide free advice to people seeking employment or training opportunities. deafConnected have been working with the Skills and Jobs Centres Network to raise awareness of the needs of Deaf and Hard of hearing clients in career guidance and study advice.
Students can book an appointment with a Skills and Jobs Centre careers councillor at any point in the their learning journey.
Visit this page to find your nearest Skills and Jobs Centre https://www.skills.vic.gov.au/s/visit-a-skills-and-jobs-centre