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Radio aids in the early years

Many parents tell us that being able to use a radio aid at home can make a big difference in supporting their child’s communication and language development in the early years.

On this page you’ll find a range of useful resources to support local authorities and Teachers of the Deaf in making this possible.

Briefing paper on using radio aids with children under 36 months

Read about our position on the safe and effective use of radio aids by children aged under 36 months and find guidance to prevent potential safety hazards in our briefing.

Download the radio aid briefing 

You can also read our position paper on charging and insurance to cover the cost of replacing or repairing of all hearing and listening equipment provided by NHS and local authorities. 

Case studies

Find examples of policy documents and loan agreement forms shared by specialist support services, as well as some case studies from specialist support services below:

Example of how services can provide radio aids to pre-school deaf children by services in South East London

Example radio aids policy from Berkshire Sensory Consortium Service.

Principles and Guidance to support the Provision of Radio Aid systems and other Amplification Devices by Oxfordshire Special Educational Needs Support Services.

Case study - Radio Aids Corporate Insurance by Norfolk County Council.

Case study – Radio Aids Policy and practice anecdotal feedback.

Quality standards for the use of personal radio aids

Personal radio aids can really improve deaf children's listening experiences. This resource sets out quality standards for a common approach to the timely and appropriate provision and use of radio aids to make sure deaf children have the best outcomes.

Download 'Quality standards for the use of personal radio aids'.

These quality standards have been developed with the UK Children’s Radio Aid Working Group, whose aims are to:

  • promote the use of radio aids among children and young people
  • promote the knowledge base about radio aids
  • influence the policy framework for the provision of radio aids
  • influence the quality and consistency of radio aid provision and practice
  • raise awareness of the importance of a positive acoustic environment.

How Radio Aids Can Help - Information for parents

This guide for parents explains how radio aids and soundfield systems can help deaf children. It also outlines the different types of radio aid systems available and how to maintain radio aids.

Teachers and other staff working with deaf children and young people may also find the information in this guide useful.

Download 'How Radio Aids Can Help - Information for parents'.

My deaf child and her radio aid video
Watch a video where Helen and Alex tell us how a radio aid keeps their three-year-old daughter safe when crossing the road.
Watch 'My deaf child and her radio aid'

Radio aids video
In this video, deaf young people explain what radio aids are and how they benefit from them.
Watch the NDCS radio aid video

Ear Foundation research: Using radio aids with pre-school deaf children (2017)

Read the Ear Foundation’s research, which shows that the use of radio aids in the early years can have major benefits for deaf children and their families.

Download 'Using radio aids with pre-school deaf children'