We are headed to meet 5 students at The North Carolina School for the Deaf

Yesterday I received a phone call from the North Carolina School for the Deaf in Morganton, NC.  This teacher has 5 students that are working on an “Action” project in their community and went online and found this video on YouTube that I did with Liz Tannebaum several years ago.   In this video, we asked the question: Is there such a thing as a “Deaf Friendly Business?

This video prompted the students to call our office to see how we might work together to solve some of the issues that they want to address in their community.

Next week we are going to head to North Carolina to talk to the five students and learn about their desires to make their town more accessible.  We will also have a discussion with the whole school at a full school assembly.

We are excited to go and learn.  Please follow our trip to North Carolina…

By the way, we also caption all of our videos through the uploaded transcription program on YouTube – it would be helpful to get feedback to make sure it’s working ok for you.

About Pepsi with Brigid

My mom and I decided to do this video blog together after I read a post from a friend on Facebook where he said that he wished he could have spent more time with his mom and share his business with her... I am fortunate that my parents live in Evanston still and I am able to share this with her.
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5 Responses to We are headed to meet 5 students at The North Carolina School for the Deaf

  1. Cathy Heizman says:

    I love following your adventures with your mom. I remember meeting her years ago at the Natural Ties “convention.” when she was kind enough to host a dinner at her home. I think one of my questions to the “deaf school” would be why we need a “deaf school.” Wouldn’t kids be better off learning and playing in the real world? Still love you.

    • Cathy, thanks for your note – I remember that dinner too, gosh doesn’t it seem like ages ago? I think you ask a great question – I will ask it. The five students that we are meeting with are labeled as “low language” if I can remember that correct from my conversation. Apparently, they come from a Spanish speaking home and the parents don’t know ASL (American sign language) so it’s very isolating for them… There are a couple of schools of thought on this and as you know I favor a more inclusive world – but when the students called, it blew me away and I want to go and listen to them.

      • Cathy Heizman says:

        Absolutely you need to go. It’s a great opportunity. Those schools–for “the blind” and for “the deaf” at least in Ohio are so isolating. Kids are 100 miles from their families and communities. I just think we could all do better. It is so fun to watch you on FB and with your mom. (Has your dad passed awy?) Those early days at XU were magical. Love you and love your work.
        cathy

  2. Adrean Clark says:

    The schools are not isolating, they are very much a part of real life. I am a proud graduate of the North Carolina School for the Deaf. The best part of my education there was being able to communicate directly with my teachers and fellow students without having to be reminded of my disability every day. I had a fantastic experience, in fact, our school placed second nationally at the Academic Bowl at Gallaudet University during my time. Kids at NCSD also had the opportunity to compete with other schools in sports tournaments and join clubs such as the Jr. National Association of the Deaf. The average deaf student in the mainstream would not get those opportunities. They’d have to be superachievers to get the same experience.

    It is the ignorance of people and politicians who starve those fantastic schools of funding and choose to isolate deaf children in the mainstreamed school environment. I hope this changes in time.

  3. Deaf Person says:

    As a Deaf person who experienced both school for the deaf and public school, the questions many hearing people have regarding schools for the deaf come from their *hearing* person’s point of view. They usually don’t know much or anything about those schools and what they can offer deaf and hard of hearing (hh) children. There are varieties in students’ levels and abilities as one will find in a public school. There are students who are super achievers, average, below average or have other disabilities. Also the students may be signers, oral, or use both ASL and spoken language. The most important point is that the students have direct access to information in a learning environment. There are some public schools that do provide excellent services for deaf/hh students such as interpreters, note takers, CARTs, etc but it is different from having the information coming directly from the teachers and other staff. Unfortunately, there are some public schools that do not provide accurate or any services (due to lack of trained staff locally) for the deaf/hh students. Those students end up struggling in classes or just give up. Many also do not realize that the laws regarding services for deaf/hh students do NOT require schools to provide interpreters for after school activities because the activities are not considered as an “education” aspect – schools can be required to provide interpreters only for classes. The “lucky” students in public schools who are able to be involved in sports, clubs, etc were in the few school districts that are more than willing to voluntary hire an interpreter. At a school for the deaf, all information and communication are directly from team mates and coaches. As for the social aspect, it is the same in the so called “real world” where hearing people still tend to stick with certain people in groups (i.e. cultural aspects). Deaf/hh people do the same once in a while, which makes sense according to their communication needs. Even oral deaf/hh people get together for events, away from hearing people.

    Deaf/hh people do not consider themselves as isolated if they attend a school for the deaf (either signing or oral). They know they are still in the “real world”, the parents/students chose for them(selves) to obtain their education and develop skills directly from the staff in a different learning environment. Also to be exposed to deaf/hh (signing or oral) adult role models who are very rare in public schools, they provide guidance for the students to develop skills to be prepared in different situations – knowing both “deaf/hh” and “hearing” ways.

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