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Special Education

Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Sensory Impairment
The term shall include the following:

Hearing - The capacity to hear, with amplification, is limited, impaired, or absent and results in one or more of the following: reduced performance in hearing acuity tasks; difficulty with oral communication; and/or difficulty in understanding auditorally-presented information in the education environment. The term includes students who are deaf and students who are hard-of -hearing.

Educational Programs in Massachusetts

Approved Private Schools:

  • Beverly School for the Deaf
    Beverly School for the Deaf seeks to enhance the lives of Deaf and hearing children and their families living with communication and developmental challenges by providing comprehensive educational and communication-rich programs.

  • Clarke School for the Deaf/Center for Oral Education
    The Clarke School for the Deaf is a world leader in educating hearing-impaired children. For more than 130 years, the pioneering auditory/oral programs have taught deaf and hard of hearing children to listen and talk. They have trained hundreds of teachers for placements in schools around the world. In addition, Clarke offers comprehensive services and programs to help individuals of all ages who experience hearing loss.

  • The Learning Center for Deaf Children (TLC)
    TLC offers a challenging program of academic excellence for Deaf students from infancy through high school. The Learning Center's curriculum fosters knowledge and respect for both American Sign Language (ASL) and English, and for American Deaf and hearing cultures.

  • Willie Ross School for the Deaf
    WRSD offers a full array of educational programs from the Early Childhood level through the Secondary level. Students are eligible for admission to Willie Ross at age two-years, nine months. Students may remain enrolled at WRSD until the age of twenty-two or upon their graduation.

Public Separate Day School

  • The Horace Mann School for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
    The Horace Mann School educates all students by creating diverse learning environments that develop their full academic, social, technical and vocational potentials so that that they can be life long learners, responsible citizens and active participants in both their deaf and hearing communities.

Collaborative Programs

  • The READS Collaborative program for children who are Deaf or hard-of-hearing
    The READS Collaborative program for children who are Deaf or hard-of-hearing provides educational services within a public school setting for preschoolers through age 22. Students are introduced to mainstreamed classes in the lower elementary grades, as appropriate, to gradually introduce them to using an interpreter. When entering high school, students have the option of taking general education classes and/or enrolling in vocational programming. The Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Program provides services tailored to each student's type of hearing loss, communication needs, and choice of amplification (hearing aids or cochlear implants).

  • The CAPS Education Collaborative
    The CAPS Education Collaborative provides programs for Deaf/Hard of Hearing Students at the preschool, elementary, and high school levels. Programs are designed to meet the range of learning needs in a variety of group configurations, including 1:1 instruction. Individual staff members accompany students from the program who are integrated into general education classes.

  • The EDCO Program for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
    The EDCO Program for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is Massachusetts oldest high school program for Deaf and Hard of Hearing students. EDCO offers the unique opportunity for education either in self-contained (Deaf and hard of hearing students only) or integrated (Deaf and Hearing students together) classrooms. EDCO's focus is middle school through high school, grades 6 through 12, with the program housed in the Newton public Schools. The EDCO Program is a total communication program designed to meet individual students' needs.

Educational Programs in New England

Massachusetts Organizations/Resources

National Organizations and Resources

  • The Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (AGBell)
    AGBell is a membership organization and information center focusing specifically on childhood hearing loss, with an emphasis on the auditory approach. Informational materials address questions that parents typically raise, basic information on pediatric hearing loss, and general information on how to best service students with hearing loss in the classroom.

  • American Society of Deaf Children (ASDC)
    ASDC is a national organization of families and professionals committed to education, empowering, and supporting parents and families to create opportunities for their children who are deaf and hard of hearing in gaining meaningful and full communication access, particularly through the competent use of sign language, in their homes, schools, and communities.

  • The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)
    ASHA provides information and resources about communication disorders for students, parents, professionals and others.

  • The Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP)
    The DCMP acts as a captioning information and training center. The DCMP is a FREE video lending library funded by the U.S. Department of Education and administered by the National Association of the Deaf.

  • The Center for the Study of Communication and the Deaf (CSCD)
    CSCD is devoted to both applied and theoretical research to benefit the deaf and their families.

  • Clerc Educational Center at Gallaudet University
    The Clerc Educational Center has been mandated by congress to develop, evaluate and disseminate innovative curricula, instructional techniques and strategies, and materials. The aim of the Center is to improve the quality of education for deaf and hard of hearing children and youth from birth through age 21.

  • Council for Exceptional Children, Division for Communicative Disabilities and Deafness (DCDD)
    DCDD is dedicated to improving the education of children with communicative disabilities or who are deaf or hard of hearing.

  • The Deaf Resource Library
    The Deaf Resource Library is an online collection of reference material and links intended to educate and inform people about Deaf culture.

  • National Center on Low-Incidence Disabilities (NCLID)
    The goal of NCLID is to increase the nation's capacity to provide educational and support services to infants, children and youths with deafness, blindness, and severe disabilities by developing a comprehensive, integrated, online system that prepares teachers, supports families and assists schools.

  • Raising and Educating Deaf Children: Foundations for Policy, Practice, and Outcomes seeks to provide objective, evidence-based information for policy-making and practice associated with raising and educating deaf children. Bulletins are posted quarterly. A variety of stakeholders will likely find both the bulletined and scholarly articles posted on this site useful. The writing is geared towards professionals, practitioners, policy-makers, and other parties interested in optimizing opportunities - and futures - for deaf children. This site operates in association with the Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, published by Oxford University Press, and is administered by the Center for Education Research Partnerships at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf.

  • The Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf, Inc. (RID)
    RID provides international, national, regional, state and local forums and an organizational structure for the continued growth and development of the professions of interpretation and transliteration of American Sign Language and English.

  • Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA)
    The mission of HLAA is to open the world of communication to people with hearing loss through information, education, advocacy, and support.



Last Updated: October 19, 2015
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