Your child has been growing with dreams for their future. As they progress through high school, these dreams will become more concrete plans for the next stage of life.
Moving beyond school is a challenging time for all young people, deaf or hearing.
It is a time of enormous change where responsibility for their education and training shifts from parents and teachers to the young person themselves. Choices need to be made about future careers and the courses required to gain employment in one’s chosen career.
Why the change is often extreme
For young deaf and hard of hearing people, this transition can become even more confusing and problematic. Most deaf kids’ educational experience is atypical as they receive far more individualised support in the school environment. Often, if they are lucky, many of their needs have been anticipated along their educational path through school.
Even with a moderate hearing loss and attendance at a mainstream school, steps have been taken to compensate for the reduction in information access and incidental learning. For a student with a severe to profound hearing loss who has attended either a mainstream school with a deaf unit, or a special school for the deaf, it is likely that they will have received even more educational support.
Stepping out and taking control
After leaving school, the additional support that a deaf student has had may be greatly reduced, or even totally absent. This often leaves a deaf adolescent in a support “vacuum” and, frequently, unable to articulate their own support needs. The student will need to put in place supports such as interpreters and note takers themselves.
This is because in their previous learning environments, all of their needs were anticipated for them. They then arrive in either TAFE or university to a learning environment that is significantly different from High School. They are expected to take control of their own learning. This happens in the context of a huge increase in personal freedom.
Young people need support navigating this increase in responsibility and freedom, as they step out of a very protected environment.
How we help
The HEARO approach aims to empower both the parent and the young person. Our family support service can advise you and link you with supports and services.
In addition, we can link you with a family who has already navigated this stage to mentor you.
We know that not all young people will choose further study. Many may choose to enter the workforce straight from school, and there is support available for them too.
Our School Leaver Employment Support (SLES) program can help young people who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing transition from school into job or training, preparing them for the next stage of life.
The individualised program will help build:
- Life skills
- Work experience
- Health and wellbeing
To learn more about these services and register your interest, please sign up below.
•Providing tailored support for your teen’s unique communication journey
•Pairing parents of teens with hearing loss with more experienced parents
Here are some further links related to life Beyond High School:
- Beyond school – Aussie Deaf Kids
- School Leavers Employment Supports – NDIS
- Finding and Keeping a Job – Deaf Children Australia
- Hear For You
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