Signs of Success for Students

13th December 2011

Students in Ramsgate can now communicate with deaf people in sign language.

The youngsters at the Chatham and Clarendon Grammar Federation have gained Level 1 passes in British Sign Language following a 32-week course of intensive after school studies.

The pioneering project in conjunction with the Royal School for Deaf Children, Westgate College for Deaf People and The John Townshend Trust, has been so successful that a new group of students is now earning BSL which is a recognised language.
The certificates were presented at a ceremony by Gail Joslin, BSL tutor, and Jon Palmer, BSL co-ordinator and tutor.

Sixth former Abi Attwell plans to study clinical engineering at university and added: “I want to work with disabled people and learning BSL is an important way for me to communicate with those who are deaf.”

Maddy Kinloch in Year 10 is studying Level 2 in BSL and said: “I want to improve my signing skills because my best friend’s sister is deaf and I want to be able to talk with her in her language.”

Mrs Joslin said: “I am very impressed with the way that the school embraced learning BSL as a trial and then wholeheartedly for Level 1 certificates, which are equivalent to a GCSE C grade pass.

“Learning BSL is a fantastic asset for people in their lives, not least in a raft of professions like medicine and teaching. It is also very expressive and I have seen how our students have developed their self esteem through the learning programme.”
Mr Palmer added, through sign language: “BSL Level 1 means these students can now hold a basic level of communication with a deaf person. They have shown a high level of dedication to progress so well in a short space of time.

“As a deaf person it is important when hearing people bother to learn and communicate with us through signing.”
Students who received their Level 1 BSL are Maddy Kinloch, Aimee Martin, Cari-Ann Hood, Brogan Hood, Katie Khamsoda, Shannon Keating, Rosie Evans, Abi Attwell, Nicola Keefe, Darrell Turner, and staff member Rik Guarnieri.

For more information of BSL signing courses contact Lana Milton, business development manager, at the Royal School for Deaf on 01843 227561 or email Jon Palmer at

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