Buckinghamshire Speech and Language Therapists have training in working with children with Down syndrome and/or have access to a wide range of specialist resources for supporting children with Down syndrome. The SLT staff have access to Therapists with more specialist clinical knowledge and experience in the areas of hearing impairment, eating and drinking difficulties, visual impairment and other clinical difficulties which may also form part of a child with Down syndrome’s difficulties. The SLT Mainstream Service provided to all children in Buckinghamshire meets the All Party Parliamentary Group on Down Syndrome: Good Practice Guidelines for Education, 2012.
The SLTs deliver support by:
- Developing the communication environment of the child, for example promoting the use of visual cues such as pictures, symbols and signing
- Training parents, carers and setting staff in the use of Makaton signing – please see the training pages of the website for more information
- Assessing the speech, language and communication needs of the child, and providing advice and specific targets to support the child to communicate
- Using the child’s individual learning profile and areas of strength to support the development of communication skills
- Working in the child’s school or setting alongside education staff on specific areas of communication, such as speech production, auditory memory, vocabulary, or spoken sentence structures.
The Speech and Language Therapists work alongside the Specialist Teaching Service for children with Down syndrome.