Watch our very first online newsletter!
Emma has been a sign language teacher for over 25 years.
I originally trained at BSLTA (British Sign Language Training Agency) at Durham University in 1987 while I was BSL Teacher Secretary at Oxford Deaf Club.
During motherhood, I became an illustrator for Deaf children’s’ books, and for the BBC Hands Up series. As my children got older, I updated my teacher qualifications at the City Lit where I achieved an STTC, City & Guild 7307, 7407 Stage 1 and 2, and worked as a BSL teacher in some Adult Education colleges. I was also BSL Teacher Co-ordinator at Enfield College. I then became a qualified A1 assessor and attended City University to gain a BSL Production Skills Assessor for children aged 4 to 11.
For the past 11 years, I have been teaching at Blanche Neville School. My role involves teaching and assessing Deaf children, parents, specialist and mainstream staff. I now work at City Lit.
I become a member of ABSLTA for 7 years before being elected onto the committee for two years. In April 2014, I was re-elected to become the new Chairperson. As a volunteer for ABSLTA, I am delighted to share my wealth of skills and experiences. I especially enjoy the challenges of working as part of the team and leading ABSLTA through the complex digital era to bring a fresh modern image and reach out to as many potential members based around the UK.
Thank you for your support.
Gillian has a wealth of skills and experience as Treasurer for a number of different organisations over the years. This has equipped me to keep a close eye on the ABSLTA finances. I run my own business and am, therefore, familiar with accounting practices.
I have worked as a BSL teacher in Adult Education for more than twenty years. I am currently working in a school as a Deaf Instructor. In addition, I run a Deaf Identity group for deaf pupils at the school and teach hearing parents how to communicate in BSL effectively with their own children.
I also work with Deaf adults with special needs, helping them to develop essential life skills to enable them to live as independently as possible in the community. I act as a deaf relay interpreter and advocate for these clients, whenever it is needed.
Hello, my name’s (name sign) Ashley Clifford. I grew up in Thurrock, Essex all my life. I decided to become a teacher when a teacher asked me what future job I wanted when I was 12. My learning journey has been a long and winding road. I attended University of Brighton to study a BA Honours in Education and achieved 2:1 in 2009. I studied Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) but left in the end due to challenging circumstances and it was a very difficult and emotional decision. It was thanks to City Lit that I found my confidence again, having studied Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector at Level 3 (PTLLS) with basic BSL linguistics. My City Lit teacher encouraged me to study DTLLS (Level 5 Diploma), which I later achieved at my local college in 2015. The same City Lit teacher inspired me to join ABSLTA in 2011, and have been a member since, helping me get into teaching BSL from 2012. Later I joined the committee when Emma Iliffe (our current chair) became chair during the AGM at City Lit (amazing how ABSLTA has strong links with City Lit). I enjoy meeting new and old BSL Teachers and Assessors at various AGMs and workshops, sharing my wealth of knowledge, skills and experience with them. I have a keen interest in research of the history of ABSLTA, one of my achievements was that I was able to preserve old videos of ABSLTA AGM and workshops over the years. I feel privileged to be part of the team overseeing the 25th and 30th Anniversary celebrations as IT and website co-ordinator, now my role is Secretary and ICT co-ordinator. I achieved Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status in 2016 which is something I am very proud of. I look forward to help develop ABSLTA further and maintaining its status as the U.K.’s leading organisation for BSL Teachers and Assessors. Thank you and goodbye.
Lesley Davidson is a qualified, experienced teacher and has been for over 30 years. She has taught all levels of BSL and linguistics in different educational settings including schools, colleges and universities.
Being a qualified trainer of trainees (qualification from Durham University), Lesley worked at Bradford in liaison with Durham University teaching Deaf people to become qualified BSL teachers. Lesley also worked as an officer for Signature (known as CACDP at that time) building new curricula and creating a ‘BSL Homework DVD’. She was a qualified BSL assessor and trained assessors from all over the UK. She has gained an MA by research which involved culture, Identity and linguistics.
With this wide range of experiences, Lesley is now a Training Officer with ABSLTA, and is looking forward to providing a varied range of training experiences which include teaching, linguistics etc for its members.
I have been teaching since 1997. I have taught in different places like:
I have had training via CIty & Guilds 730 Level Part 1 & 2. Later I went on to qualify for Post Graduate Certificate of Education (Post Compulsory Education and Training).
My BSL qualification is Level 3. I am currently teaching Level 1 and 2 with the IBSL curriculum, an awarding body.
I have been to ABSLTA's 25th Anniversary celebration. Since then I have had loads of ideas for ABSLTA. Later in 2018 I was nominated as a committee member at the Cardiff AGM. I was accepted and elected. My role was to be the researcher. I love BSL linguistics and also continuing professional development which is very important to me. I enjoy working as a team, it is important to support each other.
My vision for ABSLTA is that I want it to become stronger and bigger.
I have another job as a Specialist Study Skills Tutor at the University of South Wales. I have been supporting some deaf students with their PGCE studies.
My name is Judith Kidd. I am a qualified teacher. I studied "Issues in Deafness" at Open University. I have City & Guilds 7307 part 1 & 2, 7407 Stage 1 & 2 I have a certificate of Linguistics from City University, London. QTLS Status and I am also an assessor for Signature. I have been a team leader of a deaf studies department.
I now teach BSL Levels 1 and 2 as well as Deaf Awareness & Communication tactics as a freelance teacher. I work in schools, colleges, Adult Education and the private sector.
I particularly enjoy teaching families of deaf babies & children.
I have been a member of ABSLTA for many years. My role on the executive committee is as Events and Booking Officer.
Hello, my name’s Richard Carter. This is my name sign. I am from Devon and based there for work. I work with ABSLTA. Someone asked me to come and work with ABSLTA. The reason why I joined ABSLTA is that I am one of the younger teachers and I have seen the number of older qualified professionals diminish. I became concerned that ABSLTA itself was also reducing in number due to teachers leaving as they were old and retiring, it was alarming. I decided to get involved and support ABSLTA. I have 25 years’ valuable teaching experience. I attended DUBSLTA at Durham University to train as a teacher. My role model is (her name sign) Frances Elton. I appreciatively valued learning from her and that's why I became a teacher for the last 25 years. I decided not to give up and continue, deciding to join ABSLTA. I wanted to encourage young people to become teachers and support their development. I think that is important for my role and also my role as social media officer. I post videos on Facebook, broadcast information under ABSLTA which is really valuable. Thank you and goodbye.
Jill is the Website Developer. She has been teaching BSL for 16 years.