Many factors need to be considered when selecting educational placements for children who are deaf or hard of hearing. School placement needs to support a child's learning and social development. Different settings accomplish these goals for individual children.
Depending on where you live, you may have various educational placement options for your child. Here are some examples of different placements
Some of the key school placement factors are:
Educational placements range from full time inclusion in regular classrooms, part-time inclusion in a regular classroom with part-time special classes, inclusion in a special class focusing on spoken language, inclusion in a regular classroom with a sign language interpreter, or enrollment in a school for deaf children, or other combinations, depending on the needs that parents and educational team see.
An important point is that you might try a placement and find out that it is not supporting the child in the way the team envisioned. The team can explore other placement options – this flexibility helps you find a good match between the child's needs and the educational environment.
A child who receives one kind of program, but doesn't learn as successfully as parents and teachers had hoped, may make wonderful progress by changing to a different kind of program.
Resources on Educational Placements from Parent Perspectives
*The information in
final section was originally developed by a team that created website for families focused on “raising deaf kids” (See About Us). Minor edits may have been made.
Are you thinking about sending your child to a mainstream school? Going to a school
with mostly hearing children can have its rewards.
It can also be tough. Before you
Use this checklist to see if you and your child are ready for the mainstream. You
have to have all the points on the list.
However, the more you have, the better the chances
your child will do well in school.
Knows how well she can communicate with other people. Your child will be in classes with
mainly hearing people. Does she know
ways she can communicate with hearing people? If she does, she can try
flexible ways to
with classmates and others.
Can use her
hearing technologies (hearing aids, cochlear implants, remote microphone technologies) on her own. Your child should know how to keep them
on. And she should be able to tell
they're not working. That way, she can tell the teacher when
class. Your child may be the only student
who is DHH
in the class, and the teacher may
this help. This could be
anything that will help her learn -
from asking for the teacher's notes, to getting extra
she uses one. This means paying attention to the interpreter, and
what's going on in class. It
Gets along with other children
well and can make friends.This is important, especially if your child is one of the few
students who are DHH in her school. If the other children are shy about talking to a
person who is DHH, she may
have to be the one to go up to them.
Feels good about herself. Your child may be the only
child who is DHH in her school. She may feel different from
all the other students.
If she feels good about herself,
she'll see being different as a good thing, instead of a
Has deaf role models and friends. Your child can look to her friends and role models for help if she has problems at school.
Is willing to work hard. A different school may be harder than the school your child has been going to. She may have to work extra hard to keep up or to catch up.
Had other children who are DHH.If the school has had other students who are DHH, the staff may know what help these
sent to the library for the rest of the day would be a waste of time. If her school
someone on staff
help her, she
A teacher in your child's grade who has had students who are DHH in his
class before. A teacher who has
students who are DHH before
a big help. He may
know what kind of extra help
students who are DHH need.
He may be more
help your child.
A psychologist or social worker that has worked with children
child is having trouble in
An IEP team that has worked with other children who are DHH.
This IEP team would have a better idea of what kinds of help students who are DHH need. They will know how to set goals for these children.
a lot. Noisy classrooms can be a big distraction, especially to someone using hearing
aids or cochlear implants. Putting down carpet and padding the bottoms of chair legs and desk can
a room quieter.
Educational interpreters. If
be easier for your child
an interpreter if your child signs.