Becoming a Deaf Ed Professional
MYTH: Deaf kids are hearing kids who can't hear.
Research shows us that this isn't true, which changes how deaf students should be taught.
“You can’t teach deaf kids as though they are hearing kids who can’t hear. It’s not about ears and it’s not about speech versus sign language. It’s about finding their strengths and needs. The historical approach to deaf education simply doesn’t work well enough to get deaf students where they need to be.”
Dr. Marc Marschark, professor and director of NTID’s Center for Education Research Partnerships (CERP)
Deaf education involves educating students in a manner that addresses their differences and individual needs. It is designed specifically to meet the educational, linguistic, cultural, social, and cognitive needs of each student.
Deaf Child's Bill of Rights
The Deaf Child's Bill of Rights is specific state law that recognizes the unique communication and language needs of deaf and hard of hearing children. The Texas Deaf Child Bill of Rights states this:
Sec. 29.304. QUALIFICATIONS OF PERSONNEL.
(a) A student who is deaf or hard of hearing must have an education in which teachers, psychologists, speech therapists, progress assessors, administrators, and others involved in education understand the unique nature of deafness and the hard-of-hearing condition. A teacher of students who are deaf or hard of hearing either must be proficient in appropriate language modes or use an interpreter certified in appropriate language modes if certification is available.
(b) Each school district shall employ or provide access to appropriate qualified staff with proficient communications skills, consistent with credentialing requirements, to fulfill the responsibilities of the school district, and shall make positive efforts to employ qualified individuals with disabilities.
(c) Regular and special personnel who work with students who are deaf or hard of hearing must be adequately prepared to provide educational instruction and services to those students.