Hearing Augmentation and ChildCare / Early Learning Centres

February 2, 2022

We had an interesting discussion with an Education stakeholder recently about the application of the Building Code of Australia to learners under Primary School age.  It was this persons understanding that requirements regarding hearing augmentation did not apply to people of preschool age.

Hear and Learn procures advice from various experts about issues of regulation pertaining to hearing augmentation and soundfield so be as best placed to advise Architects, Electrical Consultants, Educators and Builders about not only matters of compliance, but which solution is best given the fluid nature of hearing aid technology.

We procured advice that states “The BCA and Premises Standards provide no dispensations or concessions for Class 9b childcare/early learning centres or set any age limits on when hearing augmentation is required.”

And further:

“From our experience, a Performance Solution approach can be a better compliance pathway in any early-learning or classroom environment. This will allow for consideration of occupant characteristics (i.e. age groups, occupant numbers, user groups, etc.), and can consider the proposed technology, existing equipment and any personal equipment issued to students or teaching staff. This can provide a better outcome and could provide for a wider range of people (who may be using different equipment and technology and may not be reliant on in-built induction loop technology).”

Hear and Learn can advise any stakeholder about how to best provide for hearing augmentation in class 9B buildings.