Your Journey – Further Education

Further Education options are available on-Island or off-Island

On-Island (Highlands)

If a pupil has been identified as having SEN or ASN (additional support needs) in school it is likely they will benefit from extra support in further education. Dependent on how much their deafness impacts on their ability to take part in education they may wish to ask for
  • equipment, such as a radio aid or soundfield system to help them hear their teachers
  • support from a Teacher of the Deaf (ToD), communication support worker (CSW) or a learning support assistant, a note-taker
  • staff teaching in a deaf-friendly way, for example not talking when turning away from the class to write on the board, making sure your child has understood tasks, and making sure videos have subtitles.

Highland’s 6th Form College offers school leavers (over the age of 16) general education courses to develop skills and attributes needed for future progression. Their full-time-courses prepare for work. Here students are coached to become personally and socially more confident, to develop their employability skills as well as improve their skills in English and Maths. All Students are encouraged to achieve a recognised qualification in a technical or vocational subject. Where deemed necessary Highlands will offer Health, Wellbeing, and Study Support (HWSS) to enable all their students attend the college safely and to ensure they are able to meet course requirements. Students with hearing loss will be able to ask for an assessment by the ToD and then a meeting with Highland’s learning support team to discuss what support is available for the applicant to enable them to access the curriculum.

Going away to university/college is a major step for any student to take but can be even more challenging for deaf and hard of hearing students. There are many forms to fill and people to contact. An extremely important change that comes with applying to university/college is that the student will be expected to represent themselves, rather than relying on a parent or carer to speak on their behalf. It is invaluable for the student to gain confidence and feel comfortable in discussing their disability, what support they need, what works best for them and what does not work.


If Highlands is not considered, one of the agencies that will offer help and support is Skills Jersey. Further information can be found on their website and their Facebook page.

Skills Jersey works with:

and is able to give advice and support with applications.

Off-Island (colleges, universities)

The question of whether to take a gap year prior to going to university/college life is worth considering in advance. Taking a gap year may put the student out of step with their friends and immediate year group. This can be a particular issue for deaf and hard of hearing students who may already have difficulty making and keeping friends. Shared experiences gained at the same time can be invaluable.

However, there are many benefits to be gained from taking a gap year including:

  • any application can still be completed with the year group when the Sixth Form is devoting resources to assisting with personal statements and other matters, and the place can then be deferred;
  • potential to complete UCAS application with knowledge of grade achieved rather than expected;
  • more time to research universities to see what support they give to hard of hearing and deaf students;
  • opportunity to visit the university or college to meet with their disability service;
  • whilst priority may generally be given to hard of hearing and deaf students for university accommodation, by taking a gap year the application can be made before most other students have even sat their exams;
  • more time to apply for Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs) from Jersey Student Finance and schedule a Study Needs Assessment (which ideally should be done well in advance of starting the course);
  • many events at university/college are organised through social media, so if the student is not already familiar then this is a good time to get acquainted.
Look to apply to universities that already have a proven track record in supporting deaf and hard of hearing students. If the university is not well established in providing this support then it may prove a struggle to both gain the support and make the most of the course. The student needs to be prepared to support themselves as far as possible, as it will not always be possible to achieve ideal conditions (e.g. noise control and face to face contact) especially if they are studying on a course with a large number of other students.
It is recommended to contact the disability service at the university or college at the earliest opportunity to see what support they will provide. Opt for support that allows you to access training material, but will not limit your attainment in terms of grades.

Some relevant examples of support the student may receive include:

  • Course
    • Lectures
      • all session content (e.g. slides, lecture notes) to be supplied in advance of lectures;
      • sign-language interpreter;
      • note taker for main lectures;
      • hearing loop system when available;
      • guidance given to lecturers on how to assist (e.g. face visible at all times, repeat all questions from floor, indicate who is speaking if others make contributions, recap contributions from floor);
      • lecturers to wear transmitter;
      • lecture capture for students to watch the lecture again later;
      • permission for student to record lectures on own device if needed;
      • video clips provided with subtitles;
      • audio clips provided with transcript;
      • note important vocabulary and concepts on whiteboard;
      • lip reading is usually not feasible as lectures hall are so big and lecturers so far away.
    • Seminars/Group Work
      • consider horseshoe setup for group discussions;
      • minimise background noise;
      • encourage members to raise hands when contributing;
      • ensure tutors have the attention and eye contact of student when addressing;
      • avoid more than one person speaking at once;
      • make allowance for processing and tiredness due to lip-reading.
  • Assessments
    • Written examinations
      • additional time;
      • own room;
      • live speaker to be used for any recorded voice;
      • transcript to be provided for all audio and video clips,
    • Presentations
      • additional time;
      • ensure questions from floor are repeated;
      • provided copies of others’ presentation slides in advance.
    • Practicals/performance assessments
      • additional time;
      • questions in writing as well as verbal where possible and appropriate.
    • General
      • ensure student is aware if alarm sounds;
      • student to meet workplace representative prior to placement to discuss communication strategies;
      • ensure student safety and inclusion on any field trips.
    • Accommodation
      • en-suite facilities;
      • flashing/vibrating fire alarm;
      • Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan;
      • priority application for university accommodation in continuing years.
Financial assistance for the course, accommodation and maintenance costs of going to university college may be available from Jersey Student Finance. However, beyond these standard costs, there may be further costs for some of the specialist support the hard of hearing or deaf student requires. Initially you should contact Student Finance to check what support they are able to provide in the form of Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs).

The process to get DSAs is as follows:

Information & support will come from Student Finance.

  •  Complete
    • Form HE1 indicating on the form eligibility for Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs);
    • Form HE2 (Income Statement);
    • Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs) Application Form;
    • Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs) Evidence Form
      • The main section of this form is for a medical professional to complete (probably a paediatric audiologist)
  • Following review of the application, Student Finance will ask the student to attend a Study Needs Assessment to make sure you get the right specialist equipment and or services to help complete the course.
    • The student will need to attend an Assessment Centre. In the case of UK courses the Assessment Centre will be based in the mainland UK. The location of these can be found at Disabled Students’ Allowance Quality Assurance Group. Book your appointment as soon as possible. It is best to have the assessment completed at the nearest location to the university/college being attended as they will then be more aware of the particular situation.
    • The fee for the Study Needs Assessment will be paid directly by Student Finance up to a maximum amount.
    • The Assessment Centre will need to see a copy of:
      • the letter from Student Finance requesting the Study Needs Assessment;
      • the student’s medical evidence.
  • You will be sent a DSAs entitlement letter to advise what equipment and other support you will receive DSAs for.
    • The letter will provide instructions on how to arrange delivery of equipment and/or other support;
    • Do not buy equipment or support before you receive the DSAs entitlement letter as costs will not be reimbursed;
    • Student Finance do not financially assist with all recommended areas that may appear in the Assessment of Needs Report
    • They do not assist with travel costs for attending a Needs Assessment;
    • They do not assist with computers, laptops, smart phones, iPads etc;
    • They do not assist with allowances, photocopies, printouts, printers or scanners etc;
    • They may assist with most software & equipment, but this assistance will be means tested;
    • They do assist with any 1:1 non-medical support (e.g. sign-language interpreter or note taker).
  • Arrange to obtain approved support. The disability service at the university/college may assist with this.
  • The Study Needs Assessment may highlight various requirements including:
  • note taker for main lectures;
  • BSL signer;
  • lecture capture;
  • specialist support to assist with coursework, time management etc;
  • text-reading software (e.g. ClaroRead Plus);
  • mind mapping software (e.g. Mindview);
  • software installation and training;
  • wireless microphone (e.g.Roger pen);
  • printer/scanner
    • printed documents may be found easier to review
    • scanner needed to scan hard copy documents for text-reading software
  • travel costs for Study Needs Assessment.
If highlighted needs are not financially supported by Student Finance, it is worth applying to Earsay to see whether they can provide any financial support.
Prior to actually going to university/college, it is recommended for the student to contact the nearest audiology unit to introduce themselves in case of emergency whilst they are attending the university/college. They will probably request a referral, including a copy of their most recent hearing test and latest report, from the student’s paediatric audiologist. The meeting should be arranged for as soon as possible after starting at the university/college.