What is the Hearing Support Unit?

Gillian attends NRC for Occupational Studies Beauty and Nails

Deafness is a sensory impairment and recognised as a special educational need.  The language and literacy needs arising from deafness may require special educational provision.  Social, emotional and behavioural issues linked to deafness may require special educational provision.  Provision may take the form of speech and language therapy; support from a specialist teacher of the deaf; placement in a Learning Support Centre and specialist equipment such as a radio aid system.


As the only Post Primary Auditory-Oral Learning Support Centre in Northern Ireland we offer a range of facilities to support the individual needs of pupils.

These include:

  • A qualified Teacher of the Deaf
  • Delivery of English in the Unit (and other subjects depending on the individual needs of the pupil)
  • Classroom Assistance in Mainstream classes
  • A Deaf-Friendly School ethos
  • Close links with parents
  • Tailored pupil timetables
  •  Integration into mainstream classes
  • Audiological checks on equipment
  • FM Radio systems

We have a dedicated team of caring, supportive and professional staff they are:

  • Mrs A Penny (Teacher in Charge)
  • Mrs L Henry (Classroom Assistant)

What is Auditory-Oral?

Tom proudly collects his NDCS Award

‘Auditory-oral’ is a method of communication used by many deaf and hard of hearing people.  The auditory-oral approach maintains that, with the use of hearing aids, radio aids and cochlear implants to amplify residual hearing children can develop their listening skills and spoken language.


In our Hearing Support Unit, we do not use sign language or finger spelling but use natural gesture and facial expressing to underpin learning and understanding.

HSU Trip to Ballyclare May Fair


Past pupil Luke Davis at Ulster University Belfast, proudly showing his Photography Exhibition