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background to be extendedSoundScapeIssue 0217For our nation to progress and prosper, we require schools that provide environments fit for learning which are not hindered by poor acoustics. Environments where teachers can communicate without fear of damaging their voices and students can learn without the stress of needless noise affecting their hearing, concentration and behaviourSources1 Health Protection Agency. Environmental Noise and Health in the UK, HPA 2010. 2 Shield and Dockrell. J. Acoustical Society of America, 123(1) 2008 3 Stansfeld et al. The Lancet, 4th June 2005 4 Dockrell and Shield. British J Educational Research 32(3) 2006. 5 National Deaf Children's Society. Do schools sound good? NDCS,2009. 6 Times Educational Supplement 21st January 2011 7 Association of Teachers and Lecturers. a healthier standard of education and retention. The NAS believes it a worthwhile investment and that, in teaching children to listen, we must make sure they can first hear and understand. Get protectedVarious studies have indicated the ticking timebomb of permanent noise induced hearing loss (NIHL) in children and young adults due to mp3 player misuse and exposure to loud music in venues and during events. The shocking reality is that the present generation of teenagers is at risk of being the first generation to be significantly hearing impaired or deaf before the age of 40. Of those surveyed by the NAS, 94% of teenagers regularly listened to their mp3 players at levels dangerous to hearing: 85db(A) and above. The Love Your Ears campaign is visiting schools with an audiologist from Ascent Hearing, encouraging teenagers to test their headphone volumes on CYRIL (Calculate Your Real Input Level) and discussing their mp3 player usage amongst their peers. Love Your Ears also has a comprehensive hearing health lesson plan and DVD for national curriculum Key Stages 2, 3 and 4 awaiting publication. Hearing deficitHearing and learning for life starts at home and in schools. We need to protect our legislation and keep our educational buildings to exacting acoustic standards. We ignore the warning signs of poor acoustics in schools at our peril and that of future generations. Effects of noise and poor acoustics on pupils' attainmentsExternal and internal noise affects children's performance in literacy, numeracy and memory tasks1. These effects can be reduced by good acoustic design. Noise outside of schools (e.g. from road traffic) affects SAT scores2: a 10 dB(A) increase in external noise causes an average 5% drop in SAT scores at Key Stage 1 and a 7% drop in SAT scores at Key Stage 2. Noise inside the classroom (e.g. from the pupils) affects SAT scores2: a 5 dB(A) increase in classroom noise causes an average 13% drop in SAT scores at Key Stage 1 and a 12% drop in SAT scores at Key Stage 2. A 5 dB(A) increase in aircraft noise is associated with a two month delay in reading ability3. Children with special needs are more seriously affected by noise than others - the impact on their performance in spelling and reading is three times that of the impact on other children4. Hearing-impaired children require lower noise levels and better acoustic conditions in order to be able to hear the teacher; around 35,000 deaf children are educated in mainstream schools in the UK5; up to 40% of children in a primary school class have temporary or permanent hearing loss at any one time. Effects of noise and poor acoustics on teachersPoor acoustic classroom design leads to voice problems among teachers. More than 70,000 teacher days are lost every year in primary schools due to voice strain, at a cost of over £15 million6Teachers are eight times more likely than other workers to have voice problems.Nearly seven out of 10 UK primary school teachers experience voice problems for which a quarter of them have to have time off work7.To find out more about Love Your Ears, and to support our campaign, please visit

SoundScapeIssue 02 18Noise Oscars 2011The NAS announced the winners of the 11th annual John Connell Awards on 8th November 2011 at a packed awards ceremony in the House of Commons, Palace of Westminster, in London. SoundScape was there to hear what the buzz was about The John Connell Awards recognise and promote innovative ideas and initiatives from local government, industry, individuals and organisations that have made a positive impact on the reduction of excessive noise in the community. They are named in honour of the Society's erstwhile founder, John Connell OBE, who successfully lobbied the Noise Abatement Act through Parliament in 1960 when noise became a statutory nuisance for the first time in the UK. Lord Taylor of Holbeach, Parliamentary under Secretary of State, Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, who opened the evening, said "The NAS provides a vital conduit between government, industry and academia, piloting creative and pragmatic schemes to reduce the effects of noise on communities." The awards were hosted by Mike Weatherley, MP for Hove and Portslade, on behalf of the NAS Trustees, who praised the work, "The ceremony is a unique event which applauds the unsung heroes who work tirelessly to make our lives quieter, here and around the world. Once again we heard of pioneering technologies and practices that show initiative, cooperation and determination to tackle the complex issues of noise pollution."The award winners and categories were:John Connell Local Authority Award 2011 sponsored by Rockwool, celebrates initiatives concerning noise that were shining examples of co-operation, raising awareness and creative solutions for improving quality of life in the communityWinner Westminster City Council, London developing a Noise Strategy through public consultation which enables effective mitigation, whilst building enhanced soundscapesHighly Commended Gloucester City Council, developing a holistic and sustainable approach to dealing with neighbourhood noise complaints Highly Commended Worcestershire Regulatory Services, a new shared service bringing together Environmental Health & Licensing services from six districts with Trading StandardsEnterprise in Quiet Transport Award sponsored by the Freight Transport Association, given in recognition of quiet transport schemes Winner Carrier Transicold for their low noise family of products Highly Commended Bosch Rexroth Silence Plus gear pumps John Connell Innovation Award encourages the development of new solutions to resolve noise pollution problemsWinner Organ of Corti recycling environmental sounds and reframing them in new ways John Connell Technology Award sponsored by the Institute of Acoustics, applauds the role of industry in developing low noise solutions Winner Linde FrostcruiseT Cryogenic in-transit refrigeration system Highly Commended Echo Barrier H1 and range of temporary acoustic barriers Trude Adler Award celebrates the unsung heroes who make our world a quieter place to live Winners The Women of Sibson and Geraldine Nicholson for the No Third Runway Action Group (NoTRAG) campaignSilent ApproachT Award sponsored by Brigade Electronics, encourages the development of low noise solutions to benefit communitiesWinner Professor Jian Kang, University of Sheffield, for Soundscapes in Urban Open Public Spaces Highly Commended BAM Nuttall for Derby Station European Soundscape Award sponsored by the European Environment Agency (EEA) and Brigade Electronics, recognises European initiatives to improve the aural environment