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Service assessment provision in practice

This page provides a model of service protocols for supporting deaf children and tracking assessments to help provide points for discussions for services.[1]

Model Protocol for assessment, monitoring, reporting and review

Statement of purpose

“Facilitating a deaf child’s achievement of potential; socially, emotionally and academically, is dependent on rigorous ongoing assessment and identification of need. Monitoring, assessing and reporting upon progress in aspects of development affected by deafness are central to the role of a support service.

Staff are committed to ensuring that all pupils and parents are full participants in the monitoring and assessment process.”

The results of specialist assessments carried out by a Qualified Teacher of the Deaf (QToD) are integral to decision making processes. 

The QToD has detailed and specialised knowledge of deafness and the educational capabilities of the deaf child or young person. Staff work collaboratively with families and professional colleagues to effectively meet the needs of these children and young people in their education setting.

Levels of support are determined by initial assessment of need using nationally agreed eligibility criteria.

Assessment is appropriate, informative and effectively communicated to relevant others.

Performance indicator:

  • An initial assessment is carried out by the QToD to determine the impact of deafness on an individual deaf child or young person in terms of functional hearing, the development of language and communication, access to the school curriculum and learning. The individual needs of the child and family are taken into account when assessing, including families where English is not the first language.

The QToD accepts responsibility for ongoing assessment in the areas of:

  • listening/use of hearing
  • effective use of amplification
  • functional communication
  • interaction and pre-verbal communication
  • attention control
  • receptive language
  • expressive language
  • speech intelligibility
  • literacy development.
  • The QToD uses assessment techniques/tools as agreed by the service and discussed with parents. Assessments have clear aims and are appropriate to the child’s individual needs. Those used will be discussed with parents, school staff and aligned professionals as well as DCYP where appropriate.
  • Standardised and non-standardised measures are used to regularly monitor progress and inform future planning across all relevant areas of development.
  • A group of core assessments will be completed on a regular basis with each individual DCYP to clearly measure progress over time. Results are documented by the QToD and used to inform planning, short and long-term objectives, and advice and guidance to families and professional colleagues.
  • Additional assessments and monitoring tools will be used to supplement the information gleaned by core assessments as required on an individual basis.
  • For all DCYP on regular caseloads, the standardised scores of specialist assessments are collated annually by the management team. Scores are analysed and evaluated to provide an overview of service effectiveness and, by reviewing on an individual basis, flag up any causes for concern.

Pupils are monitored continually so that planning is informed, progress acknowledged, and success appraised.

Performance indicator:

  • Information from the monitoring process is used to review need, provision and approach on an individual basis.
  • The QToD prepares plans in consultation with pupils, parents and school colleagues at a rate appropriate for individual children. This is normally termly.
  • Annually, the QToD will review the nature and frequency of monitoring required for children without an EHCP. This will be carried out in conjunction with families, schools and aligned professionals.

Staff record the outcomes of assessments on an ongoing basis to provide evidence of the individual progress of deaf children and young people across all phases. These details are also used to inform decision making.

Performance indicator:

  • Consistent and current records are kept for every child.
  • Plans indicate progress achieved and current objectives for individual pupils across areas affected by deafness.
  • Longitudinal records of progress are available for each child to demonstrate progress over time.
  • Up-to-date records of attainment are in place.

Staff are committed to providing reports which accurately and clearly describe the needs of a deaf child or young person, highlighting areas of strength and areas requiring further support.

Performance indicator:

  • Reports contain a clear description of the needs arising from the deafness and a recommendation of resources and strategies to meet those needs.
  • The service routinely provides substantive reports for individual deaf children and young people. These are used regularly for the following:
  • as professional advice for the statutory assessment process
  • as professional advice for the EHC plan review process in accordance with local authority guidelines
  • as contribution to the Pre School Advisory Group
  • as a contribution to school reviews of children without an EHC plan.
  • In addition, reports are provided in advance of all appointments at the Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) Department, and for appointments in the Paediatric Audiology Department.
  • For DCYP on the monitored caseload, a report is written following each visit. This is shared with both the family and school.

The service holds a central role in the statutory assessment and review process for deaf children and young people.

Performance indicator:

  • The QToD informs parents about the statutory assessment process and supports their full participation in the process.
  • Staff will initiate or contribute to referral for statutory assessment if necessary, following local authority guidelines.
  • Requests for professional advice as part of the statutory assessment process are responded to within the time frame defined by the local authority.
  • The QToD works in partnership with parents, pupils, school staff and aligned professionals in following local authority guidelines for the review process.
  • For DCYP supported on a regular peripatetic basis, the QToD provides a substantive review report and attends review meetings, provided adequate notice is given.

For children supported on a monitored basis, staff will provide an educational report for the Annual Review meeting if requested.

[1] With thanks to Northumberland Sensory Support for providing an example of an assessment protocol from which this example is drawn.