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Parliament: BSL in schools

Yesterday's debate in parliament made reference to the use of BSL in schools.

Madeleine Moon (Bridgend, Labour)

May we have a debate on the increased teaching and use of British Sign Language? Last week I visited Archdeacon John Lewis primary school in my constituency and was pleased to see children as young as three and up to the age of 11 not only singing in English and Welsh, but using British Sign Language, along with all their teachers. As there are two profoundly deaf children in the school, all at the school have taken responsibility for learning British Sign Language. Is that not a subject that we should be rolling out throughout our schools?

Jack Straw (Lord Privy Seal, House of Commons)

As someone who takes a close interest in matters related to the deaf, I applaud my hon. Friend's interest and will certainly look for an opportunity for a debate, possibly on the Adjournment or in Westminster Hall.

Jack Straw MP is hard of hearing, and some of you might remember he opened FDP Conference at Blackburn in 1997 (his constituency). He caused a stir in the UK last October, by suggesting Muslim women should remove their veils.

Question: why are such measures delivered on an ad hoc basis, instead of the government taking inclusion seriously in schools, and introducing measures such as BSL as a language option, on par with French and Welsh?


Comments (6)

Impossible this is. Not a language BSL is.

is that all? the fella said they may have a debate in Westminister or in adjunct, then they moved onto other topics. what next?

Not a language? I'm relatively new to all of this, and by no means suggesting I know anything, but, if it's a relatively established fact that ASL is a language, why wouldn't BSL be one too? Is there some difference I'm not aware of?


Dennis - Welcome to UK, the home of where we have orges and trolls and the like...

Anyway, there are some people that'll argue till they're blue in the face that BSL is not a language, no matter whatever evidence you throw at them. If you read this blog often, you'll soon come to see who they are.

please do not attend aslexpo. James Steve Kittell the scammer owns this business. He ripped off many people by stealing credit card information. Don't go there no matter how good it is or not.

Hi, sorry to hijack this posting, Alison but I didn't have any direct way of contacting you and Jen. Hope you are both very well? I am hoping I can use the power of blogging for a BSL cause as Joe Gwynne Jones has been trying to get me to see how useful and powerful blogging is!

There is a draft consultation document on BSL Broadcasting that OFCOM is asking people to respond to by June. It is imperative that we get as much feedback as possible related to this. Can either one of you email me so I can forward the document and some info? Could you blog it? I imagine both of you have strong views on the draft consultation document!

Many thanks :) Dawn

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