Our school pupils are breaking down barriers between Deaf and hearing young people with a unique Sea Scouts camping event at the Academy this summer.

Six of our residential pupils who are members of 1st Topsham Sea Scouts will be helping to host an evening of outdoor activities for their hearing friends from their scout troop on Thursday 15 June. Our Deaf Sea Scouts will then continue the adventure, when they say farewell to their friends from the troop, by camping overnight on our grounds instead of sleeping in their regular residential provision.

Our Secondary School student Thomas is playing a leading role in hosting the pioneering event. Exeter Deaf Academy Care Officer Charlie Sutherland, who will be on duty at the event, said: “I want to highlight the role that Thomas is playing in running next month’s event and the great contribution that he makes towards the Sea Scouts.

“He has been in the Scouts for a number of years and became a Sea Scout a year ago. He is becoming a good mentor to the younger students, from teaching them how to tie knots to map reading.

“Thomas loves being outdoors and will always jump in to help the other Sea Scouts, both deaf and hearing. It’s building his confidence and he sets an example to other young people.”

Thomas said that he loves the camaraderie with his Deaf and hearing friends in the Sea Scouts.

“I like camping and having barbecues and I love helping my friends,” he said.

Academy members of the troop, for boys and girls aged 12 to 15, have already been raising Deaf awareness by teaching British Sign Language (BSL) to their fellow sea scouts.

The event, which is the first of its kind at the Academy, is intended to further build bonds between our pupils and the hearing community.