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Deaf students 'less likely to attend a Russell Group University compared to their classmates'


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New research shows deaf students are less likely to attend a Russell Group university than their hearing classmates.

Data obtained by the National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS) via a Freedom of Information request has revealed how only 9% of deaf school leavers attended a Russell Group university in the academic year 2015 to 2016, compared to 17% of applicants with no disability. 

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The National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS) say they want universities to to widen access for deaf young people.

Susan Daniels, chief executive of the NDCS, said: "The 50,000 deaf children and young people in the UK should have the same aspirations and the same opportunities to thrive and succeed in life as any other children.

"While we celebrate the fact that deaf young people who complete their A-levels now go to university at a similar rate to hearing young people, clearly there is still a big problem when it comes to entering our top universities.”

She said: "Russell Group universities need to get a grip on this problem. They need to work out what's working and what isn't.

"They need to learn from some of the innovative programmes that have been developed to get children from disadvantaged backgrounds into university."

A spokesperson for the Russell Group said: “Russell Group universities encourage all young people to apply to our universities, whatever their circumstances may be. Applications are judged on merit and are not affected by a student’s disability.

“Our universities are working with 8,000 schools across the country to continue improving the diversity of our students, by encouraging young people from all backgrounds to apply.

“Students with disabilities, including those who are deaf or hard of hearing, are supported by a disability adviser when they arrive at university to develop an individual student support plan. This can also include help with applying for disability financial support.”

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