The Communication Trust Newsletter
November 2012


Our newsletters this year will share information about the work of the Trust, how we're continuing the legacy of the Hello campaign and updates from the world of speech, language and communication.

You'll also be able to find out what is happening with member organisations of the Trust.

Free conference to support cracking communication in your school - 13th November 2012, Manchester

With fantastic speakers including Anne Duffy, Ofsted, learn more about supporting communication skills and enhancing outcomes in all children...

The conference will link together policy, evidence and practice in order to support schools to identify children with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) and to enable all children achieve their potential through better communication skills. As communication is such a relevant and increasingly important topic, we are really keen to maximise our audience reach and provide learning opportunities for the sector.

Keynote speakers
A particular policy focus will be on the inclusion of communication in the new Ofsted framework and we are delighted to have Anne Duffy, a representative from Ofsted, as a keynote speaker. Other keynote speakers include Professor Geoff Lindsay from The Better Communication Research Programme, and Wendy Lee, Professional Director from The Communication Trust.

Please click here to view the programme for the day.

Workshops will focus on practical advice and tools that will enable school leaders to consider a range of practical solutions, based on good practice and clear evidence for their own individual communities.

Please click here to view more information about the workshop sessions.

This conference will be suitable for:
• Head teachers and deputy head teachers
• Curriculum leads, leads for teaching and learning and anyone implementing National Curriculum changes in their schools
• Commissioners in the education and health sectors

There are still some places available, book now to get yours! Click here to register.

An exhibition will also be on offer throughout the day to give participants the opportunity to network and see resources firsthand.  Exhibitioners will be promoting products and services that are available to support schools, specifically resources and/or services (free or purchasable) that focus on children between the ages 5 -18 or key Stages 1-5.

*Delegates who have already paid for a place at the conference will be contacted and offered a refund.


Shine a Light Awards 2012: Update

Shine a LightEntries have now closed and short listing has taken place. The judges have just completed the hard work of making the decision on the winners at a special event held on Friday 19th October at Pearson’s headquarters in Strand, London.

We’re also delighted to announce that the celebrity host at this year’s award ceremony will be television presenter Paul Ross. Mr Ross has formerly been a journalist and radio presenter, and is perhaps best known as showbiz reporter on This Morning. He played the part of ‘Mr Sit-up Britain’ in the film Bridget Jones’ Diary and was a contestant on Channel 4’s Celebrity Come Dine with Me in 2009.

Thank you to everyone who helped us spread the word about the Shine a Light Awards 2012 and bringing in some interesting applications.

Trust attends Charity Times Awards 2012

Charity TimesThe Communication Trust was delighted to be shortlisted for two high-profile Charity Times awards for its work during the Hello campaign, the national year of communication.

The Trust was shortlisted in two categories, PR Team of the Year and National Corporate Partnership Champion of the Year, for its work with Pearson Assessment. The categories were won by Diabetes UK and Cancer Research UK in partnership with Network Rail, respectively.

Representatives of the Trust and Pearson Assessment attended the award ceremony held at Lancaster London Hotel, near Lancaster Gate, compéred by actor and comedian Miles Jupp, and a great night was enjoyed by all.

For more information, click here.

No Pens Day Wednesday – bigger and better than before!

NPDWA big thanks to you all for promoting No Pens Day Wednesday 2012 and helping to make it the biggest yet! More than 500,000 children in over 1,100 schools across the UK and the world put down their pens on 10th October to mark the second No Pens Day Wednesday.

We were delighted to see so many schools making the commitment to place an emphasis on speech and language, and the international attention the day got this year was also brilliant. We had schools from Australia, New Zealand, Russia, India, Spain and Zimbabwe signing up to take part. One school in Tasmania got interviewed by their local radio station where they spoke with children and speech pathologist Danielle Le Rossignol. To listen to the interview please click here.

If you know of any schools who took part who would be interested in acting as case studies for us, please ask them to contact with a short piece (roughly 200-250 words) explaining why they took part in No Pens Day Wednesday, what activities they did and what impact it had on the children. If they can also include pictures in a jpeg format, that would be fantastic.

We will try to use these stories in a special section on our website.


New product testing opportunities

In the upcoming months the Trust will be piloting some new resources, which will support a range of practitioners within the children’s workforce.

If you would like to view and feedback on the resources at this testing stage, or to find out more information, please email Amy Harker on

Voice for Life - New events in 2012/13

Earlier this year Afasic, in partnership with The Communication Trust, ran 3 free events for parents, professionals and young people called the Voice for Life events. These events are back for the end of 2012 and are running into 2013!

Afasic- The University of the West of England, Bristol, Thursday 6th December 2012
- Haydock Park, Merseyside, Thursday 7th February 2013
- North London March 2013 (Venue and date tbc)

The day will offer:
• Workshops about speech, language and communication needs for parents/carers and/or professionals facilitated by The Communication Trust members and local agencies
• Activities for school groups
• Information stands

TCTThe programme for Bristol is now available. As well as an exhibition, there will be 36 workshops to choose from, being run by a host of national and local agencies covering a range of topics. To view the programme and booking form or to get more information about the events generally please click here.

For more information on any of these FREE events please contact Carol Lingwood on


Charity of the Month:
SMIRA (Selective Mutism Information and Research Association)

SMIRASMIRA (Selective Mutism Information and Research Association) celebrated its 20th birthday at the end of October 2012. Based in Leicester, it was originally formed as a support group for a few local families but gradually grew to become the national organisation it is today.

Children with Selective Mutism will speak confidently in some places, usually the home, but remain silent in others, often at school. Since the condition is relatively rare, families can feel very isolated. Many professionals do not know how to recognise and treat Selective Mutism.

SMIRA offers support to families, health and education professionals.  It produces a number of information leaflets and offers other resources including the 24-minute DVD ‘Silent Children – approaches to selective mutism’ and its accompanying book. SMIRA holds an annual Parents’ Meeting/Conference.

SMIRA has a website at, which includes a forum.  There is also a very active facebook group.

Council for Disabled Children launch survey to gauge impact on sector of government funding

CDCIn an effort to make the case for ongoing funding to the voluntary sector from government CDC has created a survey. It asks seven key questions about the impact it would have on your organisation if any funding you receive from government should cease. CDC and their Partnership Board will use the information gathered from this survey to form the basis for a paper to submit to the Department for Education.

Please click here to take the survey, or to find out more about it please click here.

NICE guidance on social and emotional well being in the early years is published

The guidance aims to define how the social and emotional wellbeing of vulnerable children aged under 5 years can be supported through home visiting, childcare and early education. The guidance has been written for those responsible for planning and commissioning children's services in local authorities (including education), the NHS and the community, voluntary and private sectors.

It is also intended for GPs, health visitors, midwives, psychologists and other health practitioners, social workers, teachers and those working in all early years’ settings (including childminders and those working in children’s centres and nurseries).

To download the guidance in full or read a summary please click here.





RALLI YouTube campaign newsletter for September and October available

RALLI stands for Raising Awareness of Language Impairment and is aimed at children, parents, families and education professionals, to share stories and experiences of those with specific language impairments.

RALLI have produced newsletters which include further information about the RALLI films, including details of two new films to the YouTube channel specifically about SLI. The newsletter also contains more general news about the campaign.

To read the newsletter in full please click here.

Every Disabled Child Matters and RNIB report raises concerns about disabled young people’s experience of the benefit system

A new report from the Every Disabled Child Matters (EDCM) campaign and the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has raised concerns about the impact reforms to Disability Living Allowance (DLA) will have on the ability of young disabled people aged 16-25 to establish independent living.

The report, Disabled Young People and Personal Independence Payments, cautions that not enough consultation has been done with disabled young people to ensure that Personal Independence Payments (PIP), which will replace DLA from October 2013, meet their needs. EDCM are urging Government to work more closely with disabled young people and to monitor the impact PIP has on them when it is introduced.

To read the report in full please click here.

News from our members

The Communication Trust is a consortium of nearly 50 voluntary sector organisations. We bring together our expertise to ensure that the speech, language and communication needs of all children and young people are met through signposting, specialist training, support and guidance to people working with children.

If your organisation would like to become a member of The Communication Trustís consortium please go to or for more information e-mail


Contact a FamilyContact a Family and The Children’s Trust Tadworth - Launch campaign to stop the removal of Disability Living Allowance from children in hospital

The Children's Trust, TadworthThe campaign is concerned that some of the UK's most severely disabled and sickchildren and their families are being denied financial help when they need it most. A child's Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is stopped after 84 days in hospital and subsequently the parents' Carer's Allowance is suspended. This is despite the extra costs to a family when their child is in hospital such as loss of earnings, travel, parking and food.

Contact a Family and the Children’s Trust, Tadworth are gathering evidence from affected families or those at risk of being affected – families whose children have complex health needs and are often in and out of hospital. They have also prepared a policy briefing and are asking people to sign a petition.

To find out more about the campaign please click here.

NDCSNational Deaf Children Society - Petition, more signatures urgently needed

The government has issued an ‘initial response’ to the NDCS ‘Save our Services’ petition, but the response has not gone far enough to take action to stop cuts to deaf children’s services, which are putting thousands of deaf children at risk across England. The petition has currently reached 10,000 signatures but needs to make it to 100,000 to prompt a formal debate on the issue.

To read more about the Government’s initial response and the NDCS petition please click here or, if you haven’t already, to sign the petition please click here.

SignalongSignalong - CEO Vacancy

Mike Kennard, CEO of the Signalong group is retiring in early 2013. Signalong is looking for a dynamic and imaginative new Chief Executive.

The deadline for applications will be Wednesday 7th November 2012, with interviews being held Thursday 15th November 2012.

To read a full job description for the post please click here or to visit the Signalong website please click here.   
Contact us

If you would like to contact us please call 0207 843 2526 or email
The Communication Trust, 8 Wakley Street, London, EC1V 7QE


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