FPU Curriculum Intent
“The limits of my language are the limits of my world.”
In the Focused Provision Unit for the Deaf, our aim is to prepare our students for life beyond NUSA so that they can become fully immersed members of society. Our intent is to teach resilience and independence; to give our students the knowledge and confidence to have a voice of their own so that they have the power to ensure their needs are met. Our expectation is that students will have met their academic potential and will have developed the life skills needed in order to thrive.
Deafness has a significant impact on language development and consequently on understanding of concepts and on general knowledge. Our aim is always to promote and extend language, seizing every opportunity to enrich the students’ receptive and expressive skills. Every young person has a bespoke timetable, with his or her particular needs in mind. Time spent in the Focused Provision Unit, method of communication and emotional support are all tailored to the needs of the individual.
Where possible, students join mainstream classes so that they can learn alongside their peers, with the support of one of our Communication Support Workers. For some students, progress is better ensured by being withdrawn to the Focused Provision Unit for lessons with a Teacher of the Deaf. This allows the curriculum to be adapted so that the most appropriate subject content is taught in an accessible manner and at the young person’s own pace. Instead of GCSE options, a small number of our students are offered alternative courses taught in the Focused Provision Unit. Core subjects along with optional subjects such as computer skills, catering, woodwork, photography and life skills have been offered and all lead to an Entry Level or Level 1 qualification.
As a staff unit, we are very aware of the need to prepare our young people emotionally as well as intellectually. Time is spent with individuals talking through feelings and behaviours using role play and other visual means to ensure understanding. We also offer a SmiLE therapy course which focuses on improving communication skills and confidence. We work closely with other providers such as The National Deaf Children’s Society, Nottingham Deaf Society and the local Deaf Club to provide our students with the opportunity to learn from deaf peers. We also invite deaf adults into the school in order to provide aspirational role models.