We see communication at the heart of all we do and the ability to communicate is fundamental to a basic quality of life. For many of our students effective communication is difficult because of a physical impairment, language disorder or learning disability. At Fairfield school we strive to overcome these challenges so all students have a voice.
We ensure pupils can develop effective communication to interact, express needs and preferences, make choices, ask questions, make friends and express feelings.
We aim to provide an environment where Total Communication is accepted, valued and developed where appropriate, this may include forms of alternative or augmentative communication (AAC). The environment will embrace current technology where this supports and complements the student’s development.
AAC refers to methods of communication that supplement or replace spoken (or written) communication. This includes signing, use of symbols, supportive writing software, gesture as well as electronic voice output communication aids (VOCAs) including apps on electronic devices. All of these are used at Fairfield School. They can also be used to support a student’s understanding, by providing them with a more permanent visual representation of language.
We work closely with the class teachers and support staff to develop and review the communication targets for the students Integrated Individual Plans.
The Communication Room is a fantastic area that is used for …
· Assessments to clarify the needs of the individual in relation to potential applications and uses of Assistive Technology.
· Speech and Language therapy sessions including Early Vocabulary sessions, Developing Language groups and Oral Skills groups.
· Learning Makaton sessions
· Communication Aid user groups
· Communication group using Eye Gaze Technology
· Parent/carer training