Who are we?
We are a boarding and day school for deaf children in Newbury, Berkshire. We take children from Year 1 to Year 13 (aged 5-19) across both our Primary and Secondary sites. We are the largest school for the deaf in the UK taking both day and boarding pupils. We use the oral communication method so no use of BSL in our classes - our pupils thrive on learning to use their voice and the use of English is really important!
English is the language of the national curriculum and of the outside world. We want our students to have good language skills, helping them to achieve better grades. We believe this will give them more choice as they move into their futures.
‘Pupils are proud of their school and talk with excitement and passion about all aspects of their education here. Their enthusiasm for learning and appreciation of the opportunities the school provides are both heartening and humbling.' (Ofsted 2020)
If you believe we could offer your child something they are not getting at present then please do come and see us for a visit or assessment. In the meantime, why not take a look at some of the myths familes are often encountered with below.
Many of you as parents tell us that you are faced with lots of information from your Local Authority (LA) and/or other professionals. Some of this information is not always correct and in some cases may make you believe you shouldn't apply to Mary Hare or even pursue an educational tribunal should you be turned down for funding.
Below are some of the most common myths that families report having been told. We hope that the facts to these will provide you with a greater sense of confidence should you wish to pursue a place with us.
It’s not worth applying, the LA won’t fund.
Over 90% of families are successful in getting their child into Mary Hare.
Our LA doesn’t fund to go to Mary Hare.
We currently work with over 83 LAs
A residential placement will harm social inclusion.
We provide an extensive peer group and friendships for life.
Your child does not sign so would not fit in.
Pupils use a range of communication outside the classroom. Many pupils learn signing when socialising with peers. It is for you and your child to decide.
Your child will have ‘access to a SALT’ in mainstream.
Beware! ‘Access to’ does not mean ‘regular sessions with’.
The legal bits:
Mary Hare is a national charity (registered charity number 1048386). We are a non-maintained special school providing for profoundly and severely deaf children and young people from all over the UK. Pupils' fees are paid for by the Local Education Authority where they live. (Department of Education number: 869/7005).
Mary Hare is a registered company number 3085006. Registered address: Arlington Manor, Snelsmore Common, Newbury, Berkshire, RG14 3BQ.