The Department for Education has published a list of online education resources – these are for parents and teachers to help children to learn at home. The list includes subject-specific resources for English, Maths, Science, PE, Mental wellbeing and Special Education Needs and Disability (SEND).
We’re not recommending the use of these resources over other online materials that you might already be using, or over work that has been set by your child’s school or Teachers of the Deaf.
However, we’re very aware that not all online resource are easily, or fully accessible for deaf children and young people – that’s why we’ve audited the Department of Education’s list and have made some comments around their level of accessibility. We hope that these are useful and that they might help you to decide which of these websites might be most suitable for you and your deaf child to use at home.
We have shared our concerns around accessibility, with the Department for Education.
If you want to share examples of online sources which are doing a great job or need to better in making their content accessible, then we’d love to hear from you - email us at [email protected]
Successes so far
Oak National Academy
Oak National Academy delivered 6 million lessons in their first month. This incredible reach is one of the reasons we have been working with them to improve the content for deaf students. We have provided support and advice on accessibility from the beginning, and will continue to do so. Working together this is what we’ve made possible:
- All teachers creating content for Oak National have been sent our deaf awareness tips to help them make the best video content possible for deaf students.
- Many deaf young people are struggling with isolation at the moment. Having content about wellbeing available in BSL, is crucial to safeguard their mental health. This assembly focusing on wellbeing has been viewed by 22,000 young people. All the assemblies feature BSL interpretation and subtitles as standard, as a result of our work. They take place every Thursday morning.
- Many of the Primary aged lessons now also have BSL interpretation. We are continuing to support Oak National Academy to increase the numbers of lessons that do.
- 100% of videos on the site are now subtitled – despite none having subtitles initially. We asked people to volunteer to subtitle videos for Oak National – thank you to those who responded to the call. What an incredible achievement in such a short time!
We will continue to support them to improve and would love to hear your feedback if you’ve used the site – [email protected]
Access to reliable news that is tailored for a younger audience is crucial at the moment, so we’re really happy that our young campaigners have been working with BBC Newsround to improve their web content. 71 deaf young people, with a variety of communication preferences, were involved in our consultation. Priorities for improvements focused on more subtitled video content and BSL interpretation. There were also suggestions for reducing background noise or music in videos and for having more deaf specific content.
“We were delighted to work with the NDCS and equally delighted that so many young people got involved to give us their thoughts not just on what they think we’re doing well, but more importantly on ways we can improve.
“We already knew we had to be better at making Newsround accessible and relevant to all but the input from the NDCS and the young deaf people who took part in the survey will really help us in our work to do that – and the good news is we’ve already made a start, so watch this space!”
Michael Short, Deputy Editor, Newsround
We will continue to work with Newsround to suggest improvements based on feedback from young people and look forward to seeing the changes they are planning.
If you know a young person aged 13-25 who would like to help with similar projects, our young inspectors programme is up and running with training sessions available now