Reading Students are Fighting Back Against The Closure of TAEDS
Theatre Arts, Education and Deaf Studies is a truly unique course. Other than Reading, deaf studies is only offered at two other Universities: The University of Central Lancashire (UCLAN) and The University of Wolverhampton. Unfortunately this isn’t the first time something like this has happened with The University of Bristol closing their centre for Deaf Studies in 2013.
But students at Reading are determined to keep the course alive and have started a petition to save it.
The petition currently has over 1,500 signatures and is growing rapidly towards their goal of 2,500 supporters.
It was started by student Sophie Mendham who, when asked about her cause, said: “I [started the petition] because of the uniqueness of the course and the effect that losing TAEDS will have on the deaf community that are already involved with us. Not only this but it will mean that we lose all ties with the different schools we go to, to establish relationships with the teachers and students.
“We go to schools that have students that are deaf or hearing impaired, we therefore become a realistic role model to them. If the university closes the course they will be taking that away from them. It’s unfair that the students who started the course this year won’t get the benefits that I had during my 1st, 2nd and now 3rd year. We rely on the years around us to help with rehearsals and give us feedback, if they close the course the first years won’t receive what I was lucky enough to have”
Theatre Arts, Education and Deaf Studies has been taught at Reading since 1985 on the London Road Campus.
A university spokesman has said “The Institute is considering introducing a new BA Education that would offer a fully inclusive degree for students with special educational needs. As part of this, the Institute is reviewing the long-term future of the BA in Theatre Arts, Education & Deaf Studies from 2016 onwards. These internal discussions are ongoing, and no decisions have yet been taken.”
People have been showing their support online for the campaign.
You can go here to sign the petition.