On 4 December 2015 the Local Authority opened its Central provision for Deaf Children in the Caddell Centre at Hempland Primary School. We chose Hempland Primary School because of its history of providing a high standard of education for deaf children.

The Caddell Centre was commissioned by the City of York Council and is run by the Deaf and Hearing Support Team (part of the City of York Council Specialist Teaching Team) in collaboration with the school. Children who join the central provision have access to more specialist support in a York primary school for learning, language development and to develop their emotional resilience and identity as a young person with deafness.

Deaf children benefit from being part of mainstream classes as well as targeted teaching and interventions in the Caddell Centre.

Our Aims

Our aims for a deaf child coming to the central provision at Hempland Primary School are:

  • To develop their communication, which can be by using listening, signing, and audiological equipment as appropriate to each individual
  • To make good educational progress and reduce or close any attainment gap that may exist between them and their peers on entry to school
  • To develop their language and literacy skills
  • develop independence in learning
  • To develop social and emotional resilience, feel included and fully participate in the life of the school
  • To develop skills for later life
  • To develop a positive deaf identity.


All children are different and all deaf children are different. At Hempland Primary School deaf children have communicated with their teachers, their hearing friends and their deaf friends in a range of different ways. This includes British Sign Language, Sign Supported English and spoken English.

Events and Activities

The Deaf and Hearing Support Team offer all primary schools across the local authority, including Hempland School

  • Training for teachers and teaching assistants in school.
  • Lunch Club for deaf children across the city
  • Opportunities to attend events both within the city and beyond with other deaf children.
  • Support for parents in supporting their children outside of school
  • Joint working

As part of the Deaf and Hearing Support Team’s work in school with deaf children we work closely with other professionals:

The specialist speech and language therapist for deaf children comes in to school to assess children and provide advice and information to staff working with the children.

We receive ongoing support and advice from providers of radio aids to ensure the children are receiving the best amplification to improve their access to speech.

Voluntary agencies, like the National Deaf Children’s Society and Lollipop Charity have strong links with us and help us to support the social and emotional development and wellbeing of the deaf children in school.


To be on the role of the Central Provision for Deaf Children at Hempland Primary School, children require an Education Health and Care Plan. This will have been issued by the Local Authority and will identify deafness as the child’s primary need. Associated with this primary need may be language delay, difficulty accessing the curriculum, literacy difficulties and issues around social and emotional concerns connected with deaf identity.

For more information about what is available for Deaf children and families in York, visit the Yor-ok Website: www.yor-ok.org.uk or contact Shelley Nicol (Senior Teacher of the Deaf) on 07780 652535 or shelley.nicol@york.gov.uk.