About Deaf Education
Deaf Education Program
Students ages 0 to 22 with a hearing impairment may require special education services to access their education. Services are provided to eligible students in a variety of instructional settings. Assistance may be provided in the areas of reading comprehension, oral and written language structure, vocabulary building, as well as speech reading, auditory learning, and correct usage of note takers and/or sign language interpreters.
Services for Children Ages Birth to 3 Years:
Intra-agency coordination of services to infants with hearing impairments and their families provided in conjunction with Early Childhood Intervention programs, including:
- Follow-up audiological assessment and fitting of amplification
- Parent education and direct intervention in the home environment
- Family access to publications, organizations and support groups
Regional Day School Program for the Deaf
In order to receive services from Regional Day School Program for the Deaf (RDSPD), a student (0-21 years) must meet the following criteria:
- Have a hearing loss confirmed by reports from a certified audiologist and an otolaryngologist (ENT)
- Hearing loss must impair his or her ability to process linguistic information and have a negative impact on academic performance as determined through a communication evaluation administered by a certified teacher of the deaf. The communication assessment must be a multidisciplinary assessment conducted by ECI or the student's local school district.
Education Placement Options
The Regional Day School Program for the Deaf was established to ensure that all eligible students with hearing loss are provided a free and appropriate public school education. East Central High School serves as the cluster-site for students in 9th grade through the vocational years (18+ years old). Students in kindergarten through 8th grade attend the cluster-site in San Antonio ISD at Mission Academy through this RDSPD collaboration.
The Communication Philosophy of the RDSPD is designed to enable each student who is deaf or hard of hearing to:
- Develop Communication for school, home and the community
- Obtain literacy in the English Language
- Have appropriate access to the general education curriculum and
- Be aware of various communication modes used throughout the Deaf Community
To reach this goal, the program will offer a Total Communication approach, defined by this RDSPD as a comprehensive range of communication options which may include aural, oral, sign language, spoken language, speechreading, auditory development, reading, writing, fingerspelling, gesture, pantomime, body language, pictures and assistive technology devices.
The RDSPD will respect the student’s mode and language of communication. Instructional arrangements and appropriate support services will be offered based on mode and language, parent preference and data.
The RDSPD is committed to the early identification of, and intervention for, children whose hearing loss will seriously impact their abilities to develop language without special support services. The program recognizes that parental choice is a critical factor in the determination of a child’s communication system, and therefore, all communication options should be presented and explored without bias so parents can make communication choices for their child in an informed and supportive manner.