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Lamar University Partners with TSD to Address Teacher Shortage


November 15, 2019 - Austin, Texas – In effort to address a shortage in the number of teaching professionals entering into the field of deaf education, Lamar University will expand its’ Master of Sciences degree programs in Deaf Education and Deaf Studies through a partnership with the Texas School for the Deaf (TSD).

With agreement from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, TSD will become a Lamar University host site to provide classroom space, Wi-Fi and student housing on the TSD campus for Lamar’s deaf education degree candidates who may reside outside of the Austin area.

Currently, classes for Lamar University’s Deaf Studies and Deaf Education (DSDE) students are only offered on weekends at its' campus in Beaumont, Texas.

Plans for the TSD site to be up and running will start for university students enrolling in classes for the Fall 2020 semester.

TSD Superintendent, Claire Bugen, welcomed the news and affirmed the unique partnership as an innovative way to help address the shortage of highly qualified deaf education teachers.

“This announcement could not have come at a better time, Bugen says. We look forward to sharing this news with our statewide partners in Deaf Education as well as schools for the deaf across the nation.

“Our Texas Lieutenant Governor recently asked the Senate Education Committee to look at ways to recruit, prepare and retain highly effective teachers.

“This partnership with Lamar University is a perfect example of collaboration by two educational institutions to find innovative solutions and maintain an adequate pipeline of qualified educators ready for our future generations.”

DSDE chair, M. Diane Clark, believes that offering the program on the TSD campus will permit potential students who were unable to attend the program on the Lamar campus, due to family constraints, to earn their Masters and obtain teacher certification. As noted by the TSD superintendent, Claire Bugen, we have to creatively develop programs to increase the number of Deaf Education teachers.

Lamar and TSD began working on this partnership two years ago. Clark commented that the two are perfect partners as both as both “support a bilingual educational philosophy; access to both ASL and English to support academic as well as social emotional development where Deaf children can thrive.”