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To: Scottish Government and the SQA

Mandatory BSL teaching in schools

Mandatory BSL teaching in schools

For the Scottish government to make it mandatory for all students to learn sign language in every level of education. For them to fund a BSL teacher in schools to allow for advanced learning of BSL in secondary schools especially. For the SQA to accredit the level one and two BSL exams or have them adjusted to suit the SQA requirement, for example remove the listening unit which could be replaced with a visual unit.

Why is this important?

This is not only important but in keeping with The BSL Act (2015) which in my eyes has not managed to make any real impact on the exclusion of D/deaf children in particular or to keep them in mainstream schools.
The removal of children from the mainstream classroom for 1-1 teaching defeats the purpose of the child remaining in mainstream education.
Mandatory teaching of BSL for all children in Scotland will allow everyone to have a basic knowledge and the ability to communicate efficiently with any D/deaf children removing stigma while allowing for full inclusion.
The presence of a persons skilled in BSL in the school would also allow for mainstream learning to take place and the lessons to be interpreted by that individual or by the teacher him/herself.

Unfortunately in Scotland, BSL is such a hard subject to study- there is one university course but entry without any BSL knowledge would be very hard and to learn BSL anywhere else you need to fund it yourself and it is not cheap.

I was lucky enough to learn a very basic amount of BSL in primary school due to a Deaf Student in my class. This stayed with me and after 5 years of ‘vocational’ night school which I had to pay for I have a degree in BSL and work in the colleges interpreting lessons and work for D/deaf students. This method of study is not even available at all in the west of Scotland just now and limited elsewhere as there is no providers left, mostly all going bust due to lack of students being able to afford the courses and the lack of funding from the government.

If we can give our kids a basic knowledge in primary school and the choice to learn the first few professional levels in high school we set them up for life and if they chose so, a career in BSL.

Surely this is as much appropriate as french or German. We are setting ourselves up for a crisis in 5/10 years when we have no interpreters due to no ability to train.

Please support me in my fight for inclusion.

How it will be delivered

I plan to deliver this petition to Nicola Sturgeon herself.


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2019-10-15 18:20:34 +0100

50 signatures reached

2019-10-15 10:20:10 +0100

25 signatures reached

2019-10-15 09:18:06 +0100

10 signatures reached