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Education, Education, Education!



Deaf Parenting UK is delighted to confirm the speakers for their upcoming Deaf Parenting UK Conference 2009: Education, Education, Education aswell as strong support from David Cameron (Leader of Conservative Party), Nick Clegg (Leader of Liberal Democrat), Annette Brooke MP, (Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Children Schools and Families) and Rt Hon Theresa May MP (Shadow Secretary of State for Work & Pensions and Shadow Minister for Women).


 The theme of the Conference will focus on three key areas: Educating professionals about the needs of Deaf parents; Accessing children’s education - vital for Deaf parents; and Educating Deaf parents on their rights and entitlement.


The conference offers an exciting programme of speakers and fun family activities for children of Deaf parents.  In addition the conference offers an excellent opportunity to meet with other Deaf parents, families and professionals, in order to work together to ensure Deaf Parents have equal access to Education, Education, Education! “Limited places, please book early to avoid disappointment”

Sabina Iqbal, Chair/Founder of Deaf Parenting UK: “The conference is an excellent opportunity for Deaf parents to share their concerns regarding accessing to their children’s education. Every Parents Matter and PEAL confirmed that every parent have the right to be involved in decision making of their children’s educational future but how can they if they are unable to access to information and choices? Despite the Disability Equality Duty & Disability Discrimination Act already in place which also covers Education, nothing has been done to address the issues that Deaf parents face. For example, inconsistency of policies regarding who pays for BSL interpreters for parent’s evening. Lack of Deaf awareness, attitudes and access to children’s education needs to be tackled to enable Deaf parents to participate in their children’s educational future without barriers!”


Mark Harper MP, Shadow Minister for Disabled People:Deaf Parenting UK does excellent work in supporting deaf parents bringing up their children. I am delighted to have been asked to speak at their conference in June, which will focus upon the educational needs of deaf parents and their children. I look forward to speaking at the conference and working with Deaf Parenting UK in the future.


Clarissa Williams, President of National Association of Head teachers: Children’s learning is greatly enhanced when schools and parent/carers work closely together. Parents who are deaf need to know that they are entitled to have means of access to vital communication about their children's progress and well being in school. As a long serving Head teacher and immediate past president of the NAHT l am delighted to be invited to contribute to this conference and hope that in doing so we add to the development of inclusive  partnership working  with deaf parents.”


Graham P Taylor, Child of Deaf Parent & Winner - Children's Book of the Year for The Curse of Salamander Street Arts and Entertainment Personality of the Year: 'As a child of deaf parents, I am so excited to be a part of such an important conference. Often deaf issues are not given the attention they deserve - this conference will go a long way to redressing the balance.'


Emma Knight, Chief Executive of Daycare Trust:” “Childcare is not yet fully accessible to children with special educational needs nor to Deaf parents with deaf, hearing and disabled children. The Government must provide more support to childcare providers to help them deliver the personal support many children of Deaf Parents needs. Deaf Parenting UK can provide a voice for those Deaf Parents to ensure they are able to take full advantage of the benefits of childcare which in turns benefits their children.”


Carolyn Denmark, Deaf Parent Perspective: “Today in betterment of information and social education, we fight for our justice to ensure that the importance is to raise awareness for service providers to identify Deaf Parent's needs.”


Kathy Robinson, Deaf Parenting UK Ambassador: "The focus of this conference is vital for the future of Deaf parents and their families. It holds the promise of change." 


Louis Neethling, Executive Producer and Director, Mutt & Jeff Pictures: “I can say that as a Deaf parent I wish that there had been these films and information etc had been around when I first had my children. I believes the best way of informing Deaf parents is through high quality films distributed to the community through Deaf Parenting UK plus on digital TV and popular websites that Deaf parents visit.”


Julia Gault, DCSF, Head of Families Unit, Families Engagement Division. “Ministers are committed to supporting all parents in engaging with their children's learning and development and recognise that for some parents, including disabled parents, there can be additional barriers to engaging fully.  DCSF’s Children’s Plan: One Year On report, published in December 2008, outlined actions to further support parents, schools and early years settings in engaging parents as partners in their children’s learning.  As part of this strategy, Ministers made clear that they will issue guidance to schools on working in partnership with parents and that that guidance will cover how schools work with disabled parents, including deaf parents.   We are keen to identify and share good practice by schools and early years settings and look forward over the coming months to engaging with deaf parents to ensure that our policies and commitments meet the needs of as many parents as possible.”


Professor Gary Morgan, Co. Director, DCAL, University of Central London: I am looking forward to the conference and the chance to meet Deaf parents of deaf and hearing children in order to share our research findings on language, thinking and social-emotional development.        


Messages of support:

Rt Hon David Cameron MP, Leader of the Conservative Party: “Nothing gives us greater happiness than our families and relationships, which is why strengthening relationships within families is so important.  In the support and advice it provides, Deaf Parenting UK is doing just that.  It is a unique organisation which has made a real difference to the lives of those it has helped”


Nick Clegg MP, Leader of the Liberal Democrats Party: “It is with great pleasure that I lend my full support to Deaf Parenting UK. The work carried out by this organisation is utterly invaluable not only in providing support and advice for deaf parents across the UK, but more generally in raising awareness of the variety of issues which affect the deaf community. Being a parent is one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences in life. This organisation is doing fantastic work in raising awareness of the specific issues facing deaf parents. I would like to take this opportunity to commend all those working at Deaf Parenting UK for their hard work in empowering and supporting Deaf parents and challenging attitudinal barriers.”


Annette Brooke MP, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Children Schools and Families: “The excellent work that Deaf Parenting UK carries out is such a valuable resource to both deaf parents and their children. DPUK has rightly highlighted the lack of support for deaf parents and through their services are providing this much-needed resource. What is so amazing about the support provided is that it has been put together and is run by the very people whose lives are affected in this way and who have hands-on experience of how to deal with the difficulties unique to deaf parents. By providing practical advice, DPUK is empowering parents to take matters into their own hands and deal with the challenges of day-to-day living. I would like to commend them for all their tireless work, not only by providing practical tools but also for providing role models, such as Sabina Iqbal, who are an inspiration to us all.”


Rt Hon Theresa May MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Work & Pensions and Shadow Minister for Women: “Deaf parents face unique challenges and understandably need some extra support. I pay tribute to the work of Deaf Parenting UK in providing this support. In allowing deaf parents to gain skills and share their experiences with others in the same situation, Deaf Parenting UK plays a valuable role in helping families across the country and ensuring that more children have the best possible start in life.”



For all media enquiries/ contact please contact Asif Iqbal via email

If you want to know more about Deaf Parenting UK, please email them on

Editors notes:

  • Deaf Parenting UK Conference held at Greater London Authority, City Hall, London from 9.30am to 5.00pm


  • Speakers:

·         Richard Barnes, (Deputy Mayor of London)

·         Sabina Iqbal (Chair/Founder of Deaf Parenting UK)

·         Mark Harper MP (Shadow Minister for Disabled People)

·         Clarissa Williams, (President of National Association of Head teachers)

·         Julia Gault, (DCSF, Head of Families Unit, Families Engagement Division)

·         Emma Knight, ( Chief Executive, Daycare Trust)

·         Carolyn Denmark (Deaf Parent Perspective)

·         Kathy Robinson, (Deaf Parenting UK Ambassador)

·         Professor Gary Morgan (Co. Director, DCAL, University of Central London)

·         Graham P Taylor, (Child of Deaf Parent & Winner - Children's Book of the Year for The Curse of Salamander Street Arts and Entertainment Personality of the Year)

·         Zem Rodaway, (Solicitor, Equality and Human Rights Commission)

·         Louis Neethling (Executive Producer and Director, Mutt & Jeff Pictures)


If you would like to attend the event, please email  Tickets will be issued on a first come, first served basis. Cost:  Deaf parents/ families £5                 Professionals/ service providers. £80


Please contact us for more information on: SMS: 07789 027186 (text only) E-Fax: 0871 2643323 


             Please enclose a cheque made payable to Deaf Parenting UK, C/o 96 Park Lane, Croydon, CR9 2NL no

             later than 26th May 2009.


·         Deaf Parenting UK is the first ever charity and small national organisation to be run by Deaf parents for Deaf

            parents. It represents the needs of Deaf parents in the UK, who have hearing children, deaf children or children

            with disability.


·         Deaf Parenting UK was established following research done on gaps in services for Deaf parents within the

            UK. From research, a picture emerged demonstrating the lack of awareness and consideration for the needs of

             Deaf parents.


·         Because of communication issues within the home and at school Deaf children often lack access to basic

            Information in the area of personal, social and health, such as growing up, sex education, pregnancy and             parenting. Yet the background statistics are:


                        90% of Deaf children are born to hearing parents. As well as mainstream support and                                    information, which is available to parents in general, parents of deaf children have access to                         information, resources and support via Social Services and organisations providing services to                    deaf children and their families. Information on parenting is also readily available in print,                                    Video/DVD material and Parenting Classes etc.


               Deaf children grow up into adults and become parents and yet few resources and support is    available to them in an accessible format. This is particularly with services noticeable as Deaf              Adults have a 90% chance of having hearing children where access is a real issue.


·         The following is common in Deaf parents’ daily lives, as services offered to Deaf parents are sometimes non

            existent, very limited or patchy as compared to those available to hearing parents:


                        Deaf parents are unable to access mainstream information - parenting skills classes, midwives                      or health visitors. Deaf parents find it difficult to access or participate in school life adequately                      due to staff inability to communicate in sign language or because of lack of Deaf awareness.


·         Deaf Parenting UK offers the following services for Deaf parents and Deaf parents to be:


   Deaf Parenting Skills Workshops for deaf parents with young children, teenagers and expectant parents.

   Befriender Services

   One - to - One Parenting skills support at private home or at own discretion.

   Tailor - made parenting support services to meet Deaf parents’ needs.

   DPUK can deliver presentations/consultation meetings giving an insight into the service that we offer.

·         Deaf Parenting UK have been recognised on local, national and international level especially on recent World

            Federation for the Deaf’s conference where we realised the uniqueness of Deaf Parenting UK as a national             organisation in UK. We checked with other countries and there were none like Deaf Parenting UK apart from             small projects here and there, but not a formal organisation of Deaf parents for Deaf parents. It shows on how             important for Deaf Parenting UK to present itself as a good model for other countries across the world on             enabling confidence, supporting and empowering Deaf parents


·         To learn more about Deaf Parenting UK and to qualify for free membership for Deaf parents/ families, please

            visit our website on




·        2nd Oct 2008: Deaf Parenting UK as Winner of TFPL’s first Social Impact Award 2008, Berlin, Germany, voted by the world business leaders for charity/third sector on innovative use of knowledge and information management.

·         24th Oct 2008: Sabina Iqbal, Chair/Founder of Deaf Parenting UK as Runner Up of Dacorum Award of Excellence, for support and services of Deaf Parenting UK to the local community.

·         27th Oct 2008: Deaf Parenting UK as one of the 30 winners for Talk Talk Innovation Award 2008 and to be awarded at the House of Lords on 5th Nov 2008

·         6th Nov 2008: Sabina Iqbal, Chair/Founder of Deaf Parenting UK won the Women of the Future Voluntary Award 2008, a prestige award for women breaking the high glass ceiling.

·         25th Nov 2008: Deaf Parenting UK as Runner up the Guardian’s Public Services Award 2008 for Equality & Diversity category.

·         1st Dec 2008: Sabina Iqbal, Chair/Founder of Deaf Parenting UK as shortlisted for RADAR Lifetime Achievement Award 2008,

·         7th Dec 2008: Sabina Iqbal, Chair/Founder of Deaf Parenting UK received the Beacon Prize 2008 (High Commended)

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