The launch of an Australian first online resource will help support teachers in educating students with communication support needs.
Designed to improve the learning and inclusion of students with communication difficulties, the Teachers’ Toolkit is a welcome response to the educational and social struggles often faced within our country’s education system.
Over 1.2 million Australians have a communication disability, meaning they have little or no speech. Of these, over a third face challenges and restrictions in their school and workplace.
Communication Rights Australia Chief Executive Officer, Jan Ashford hopes the valuable information detailed in the toolkit is harnessed by teachers across Australia.
“All students with communication support needs have the potential to learn and achieve, yet this goes unrealised if they are not understood in their schooling years.”
“It is our hope that this toolkit will be shared and utilised widely by teachers across Australia and through this, help build the capacity of schools and teachers to better support students with communication support needs,” she says.
Tim Chan, a student with communication support needs, commends the toolkit and hopes it will help people in the same situation as him reach their full potential.
“I feel that educators and support workers have a need for resources to help students with communication support needs, like myself,” he says.
“The Teachers’ Toolkit is a great starting point with guidelines and practical strategies to help schools become the places of learning and acceptable for us as students with challenges, so that we can develop and contribute as well.”
Designed with the help of educators, speech pathologists, students with communication support needs, their families and the Victorian Department of Education, the toolkit is easy to navigate and includes comprehensive information, practical step-by-step recommendations, summary points and checklists.
It has been made possible through the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Information, Linkages and Capacity Building (ILC) National Readiness Grants program, which aims to build the capacity of mainstream services, such as the education sector.
The Teachers’ Toolkit is available for free here.
For more information on disability support and services, please visit DisabilitySupportGuide.com.au.