Deaf Child Wants To Remain In Regular School

What’s the difference between a special school and a regular school? What are their impacts on the deaf learner? What is the success rate if your child is raised on a special school rather than a regular one? Here is the challenge faced by a mother on where she will place her deaf child. Read this article I reposted from Manila Bulletin.

Deaf Child Wants To Remain In Regular School

By TERESITA DE MESA
February 20, 2012, 1:26am

MANILA, Philippines — QUESTION I have a deaf child who is transferring from a regular school to a special school. I’m worried about her adjustment since she is used to interacting with hearing people, although she knows how to sign. She doesn’t like the idea and she wants to stay in her current school. I just wanted her to interact with other deaf children her age. The school has a lot of good programs suited for her. Am I making a right decision about this? Please help. – Worried Mom

TEACHER TESS SAYS: Two reasons are mentioned for your child’s transfer to a special school.  First, you want her to interact with other deaf children her age.

Referral for a special education evaluation is the first step in the process of determining if your child should receive special education services. The evaluation should examine all areas of suspected disability and provide a detailed description of your child’s educational needs.  The evaluation should answer these questions:

1. Does the child have a disability? What type?

2. Does the disability cause the child to be unable to progress effectively in regular  education?

3. Does the child have difficulties in coping up with the inclusive education requirements?

4. Does the child require specially designed instruction to make progress or does the child  require a related service or services in order to access the general curriculum?

5. Does the current school give the necessary services for the child?

The answer to each of these questions should be “yes”. Students cannot be determined eligible for special education just because they cannot learn academic skills or because they find difficulties in their socialization skills. Or when the reason is just like what you have mentioned in your query.

Second reason: The school has a lot of good programs suited for her.

Special education is specially designed instruction and related services that meet the unique needs of a student with a disability. The purpose of special education is to allow children/students with special needs to successfully develop their individual educational potential and talent(s). Along with providing services to these special learners, if necessary, services are provided to parents and teachers.

When your child transfers to a special education program, she will be aware that she is not in a regular classroom setting. You may discuss with her why she is going to a special school, its advantages  such as more teachers with specialization in teaching special students, more enjoyable activities, and more children who are like her.

As your child has openly shown her dislike for going to a special school, discuss your concerns and the purpose of why you think special education is appropriate for her.

The Philippine School for the Deaf is an excellent national school that offers a comprehensive special educational program specially designed for their eligible special students.  It has institutionalized a school-to-work transition and adult vocational education which assures students of academic, personality, socialization and career development programs for their community integration in the future.

Both of you may visit this school for her to see how she can make effective progress and develop her maximum potential and eventually be a productive, self-directed and fully participative and empowered member of the society.

So which school is right for your child?

You can answer this question based on your child’s particular, individualized needs. Ask what kind of setting wherein your child will learn best,  and at the same time maintain and keep in touch with her friends from the other school

Finally, be sincere and honest to yourself and your child about the real reason why school transfer is necessary. God bless!

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2 thoughts on “Deaf Child Wants To Remain In Regular School

Add yours

  1. Mom asked about transferring her child to a “special school.” If this is an entirely Deaf school it may not be “special education;” it may merely be “special” in that most Deaf and hearing people in the school know sign language, removing communication barriers and enabling the full development of the child.

    Most “special education” programs don’t have this feature; they just put us into a little room where we’re out of the way for the day so the “normals” can go about their business.

    Questions: will this affect the child’s ability to have relationships with hearing people?

    Maybe for the BETTER. Growing up I was in special education programs and taught to defer to hearing people. When I went to a school for Deaf people I learned to be assertive. Before then, I’d accepted teasing and verbal abuse. After, I learned to find out who my real friends were. I also learned how to communicate better, because I learned how to have normal conversations.

    Also, in “regular school” in special education, I wasn’t allowed to join extracurricular activities and sports. I fought to change the rule, but it wound up becoming a pain, since I had to teach each coach and other students about me before I could really participate. Phillipine School for the Deaf has Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, sports, and dozens of other barrier-free activities.

    It sounds, however, like the mom is asking about the success rate for her kid to learn to speak – probably something a heavy focus for the child in a “regular” school with a special education program. This is an emotional issue. Unfortunately, many of us Deaf people don’t learn to speak English like hearing people. (Neither do many Spanish-speakers.) Many Deaf kids who graduate from Deaf schools go on to college, jobs, family, and a very full life. Many Deaf kids in “regular” schools go on to the state welfare program.

    In the end, I think Deaf kids should try all programs they want to and then be given a set of variables to check off. We have to remember – they’re kids, and kids sometimes choose schools based on who’s got the cutest boys or girls! What classes will you take? What sports and activities can you be involved in? These are questions which adults think about but kids don’t.

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