Royal Greenwich Sensory Service
The Royal Greenwich Sensory Service provides support for children, aged 0-19 in homes and schools, who have semi-permanent or permanent deafness or vision impairment that cannot be corrected by glasses. Qualified teachers of the deaf/vision impaired can write advice and visit in schools/homes to support meeting each child’s individual needs, as well as offering deaf/vision awareness training and British Sign Language courses. Specialist support workers work with teachers and families and training by a mobility/habilitation officer or Deaf instructor is available. Schools can be provided with specialist resources such as low vision aids, Braille facilities, radio aids and adapted curriculum materials. The service also provides a weekly pre-school group for families with children with a sensory disability (ages 0-3).
Who to contact
- Contact Name
- Rory McDonnell
- 020 8921 5215
Available during school day in term time. Other times by appointment.
Where to go
- Kings Park Campus
Eltham Palace Road
- SE9 5LX
- Age Ranges
- Referral required
- Referral Details
Your child can receive support from the Sensory Service if they have a confirmed diagnosis of semi-permanent or permanent deafness or vision impairment that cannot be corrected by glasses and are either:-
• Resident at a Greenwich address when of pre statutory school age.
• Or (whether or not a Greenwich resident) if they attend:
• A Greenwich early years/nursery setting.
• A Greenwich LA mainstream primary school.
• A Greenwich LA mainstream secondary school.
The Sensory Service uses the Eligibility Criteria developed by the National Sensory Impairment Partnership (NATSIP) to determine the level of involvement with your child. NATSIP is a Department for Education funded organization that develops provision and strategy to support all providers (including Local Authorities) who support children with sensory disabilities. Depending on assessed need, involvement can range from visits to home or schools twice a week to one annual visit or monitoring progress via audiology and ophthalmology reports only.
Children attending specialist Sensory provision (in a special school or DSP), will already be supported by specialist teachers/staff in school, so they will not need Sensory Service support. If your family live in Greenwich but your child attends an independent school, non LA funded school, or a school outside of the borough, you cannot access the regular Service for your child in school. The exceptions to this are:
• The Sensory Service will carry out one assessment visit for a child in an independent or non LA school and provide advice on how the sensory needs can be met.
• If your child is in an independent or non LA school and has a statement of SEN or EHC plan for sensory disability, continued support may be made to your child for the specialist provision that the school cannot offer.
There are Sensory Services available in the other local boroughs, and information on how to access this support can be provided by the Royal Greenwich ASD Outreach team.
Via audiology clinic or ophthalmologist.
Confirmed diagnosis of deafness or vision impairment from a Health Service audiology/ENT clinic or ophthalmology department. Referrals from schools or other professionals will not be accepted unless there is clinical evidence of a
diagnosis of sensory disability as described above.
How To Complain:
If you need to complain or discuss the service your child is receiving from the Sensory Service you can do this via the Head of the Service, or through the Royal Borough of Greenwich complaints department.
• Accredited Deaf awareness training lasting 30 hours.
• Training in accredited British Sign Language via the courses offered by the Sensory Service.
The Sensory Service can:
- Provide direct support/training for school/nursery staff to plan the classroom and social environment (playground, lunchtime etc) in order to be sure the needs of your child are planned for in all settings.
- Support school staff in writing Personal Learning Plans and setting objectives to ensure that learning opportunities are suitably matched to your child’s learning and needs. We will help plan teaching programmes with school staff to support your child. This could involve arranging support from a specialist advisory teacher, a Deaf instructor, a specialist support worker or a speech and language therapist with specialism in deafness.
- Training from a vision impairment habilitation officer to support development of
mobility and independence skills in the school, home and community.
- For 16+ students - provide full in class communication support (British Sign language or notetaking) for deaf students at Shooters Hill Post 16 campus or other post 16 centres in the region. Please click here for our FE/HE charging rates.
- Organise support for your child’s move into secondary school and ensure that
information/strategies developed to support your child are shared between the
primary and the secondary school.
- Support your child with other transitions, such as going to primary school, a sixth
form centre, or preparing for adult life.
- Show staff how to use specialist approaches used to support your child.
-The Sensory Service’s input will vary depending on the need of your child at the time.
Access and inclusion resources:
Provision of specialist practical resources such as:
• Low vision aids.
• Pre braille and braille skills.
• Adapted tactile educational materials.
• Personal or soundfield FM systems.
• Curriculum materials adapted for deaf learners.
• Support in the use and maintenance of personal hearing aids. Hearing aids are issued by the Health service not education.
School based training:
The Sensory Service can:
- Provide whole school training to raise awareness of sensory disability within your child’s school and to ensure that all staff have an understanding of the strategies appropriate for students with a sensory disability
- Provide targeted training for those staff directly supporting your child. This could involve a more in depth course held over three days for LSAs for VI pupils and supported by practical course work.
Support for families:
The Sensory Service will:
- The Newborn Hearing Screening Programme sets national quality standards for
audiology and education services where a child aged 0-2 years is diagnosed with
permanent bilateral deafness. The Sensory Service also may apply the standards where there is a diagnosis of one sided (unilateral) deafness. These include standards relating to contact with families on a diagnosis of deafness; information and resources used with families; use of hearing aids ,provision of alternative communication strategies eg. BSL, and general support in the home setting for families to support your child’s development.
- Children with conductive deafness may be referred to the Service and families
offered support if the deafness is long standing and cannot be resolved by surgery.
- Families of pre-school children aged 2+ may receive the same level of support
depending on assessed need.
- Children are not screened universally for vision impairment at birth. A diagnosis may take longer to achieve. Once a medical diagnosis of vision impairment is made the Sensory Service can provide families in the home setting the same level of support as for deafness and to include
- Support from advisory teachers with pre braille skills.
- Provision of and support in the use of low vision aids
- Support from a habilitation worker.
- Provides a weekly pre school group for families with children with a sensory disability aged 0-3. All family members are welcome to attend with their children.
The specialist support available from the Sensory Service is identical to that set out in the Targeted Services section. All input is available to your child, if needed; regardless of whether he/she has it specified in a Statement of Special Educational Need, Profile of Need or EHC (Education. Health, Social Care Plan).
- Local Offer Age Bands
Pre-Birth - 5 years
- SEN Provision Type