Multiple Avenues for Deaf People
Publication Year: 2008
Published by: Gallaudet University Press
Title Page, Copyright
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John H. Kinzie School is a public elementary school located on the southwest side of Chicago. Its total enrollment of 450 students includes a special education population of 135 children. Some of these youngsters have severe learning disabilities and communication disorders, but the majority have either severe or profound...
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Two separate worlds, regular and special education. The regular education teachers were veterans. They had done it all, produced winning math, science, and writing projects, created beautiful art displays. They had had the students who could do it all. Of 497 Chicago public schools, John H. Kinzie was one of the twenty in which...
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I was a teacher of the deaf, the group speech-and-auditory-training teacher. The children called me Banks and simultaneously signed a B in a circular motion in front of the mouth. (Mrs., with its double syllables of sibilant s, was an impossibility for the younger children.) Every class in the deaf department came to me for forty minutes a week of group...
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The deaf children needed expensive equipment in addition to the carpeting and drapery that helped to muffle the environmental noises in the classroom- the feet scuffling across the floor, chairs dragging, desks banging, books dropping, kids talking. Although they were identified as deaf, the children had varying degrees of...
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Every deaf child had a personal hearing aid-on paper there was a serial number or two for each. Most children had body aids that were worn on the chest in a harness: standard white cotton, cool blue denim, or far-out crocheted. Usually about eight square inches in size, the rectangular hearing aid unit housed a battery-powered...
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There were very few interruptions to the classroom schedule except for an intermittent "Mr. Franklin, call the office. Mr. Franklin, please call the office" from the public address system. Mr. Franklin was an exemplar of the management-by-walking-around theory of administration. After solving the morning's immediate...
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Ms. Maureen Brownell was Kinzie's team leader, a teacher position endowed by the special education coordinators with supervisory responsibilities. Her job required, as she said, "wearing many hats." It involved making decisions on curriculum and materials, on placement of children, on multidisciplinary conference...
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I started organizing the deaf department assemblies back at Marquette School, probably because one of my speech classes always had a poem or skit memorized and ready to perform. I relied on the arts as a framework for my speech lessons. Special ed required innumerable repetitions, and having a hearing loss precluded picking up any information...
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Albert asked the question first in speech class, on a balmy Indian summer day when shafts of sunlight highlighted the "sha(r), shaw, shoe, shee" on the speech chart and the warm-for-October breeze blew the playground noises into the classroom. It was recess time for the hearing children, and their songs and shouts were so...
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In June 1984, Mr. Franklin received a copy of a letter sent to Ms. Altschuler. It was signed by Fred Barnes, the director of Special Education, and cosigned by the assistant superintendent of Pupil Personnel Services and Special Education, the deputy superintendent of Field Management, and the deputy superintendent of Education Services. Mr. Franklin...
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Marcia created several button designs, and the committee selected a deaf boy and a hearing girl signing "friends." A friend of a friend owned a buttonmaker which he loaned to Kinzie. The round, pink symbols of acceptance were worn proudly by the primary children, displayed less flamboyantly by intermediate...
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MS. Blatt had attended my presentation at ITHI. During Exceptional Children's Week she requested a conference with Mr. Franklin. At that meeting she stated that it was imperative that I discontinue my mainstream activities and serve exclusively as "the designated teacher of speech," seeing children individually or in...
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About one-third of Kinzie's deaf students were now learning with hearing children in communication arts or one of the mainstreamed arts classes taught by Marcia and me together. These students were also mainstreamed for library weekly. Violet and I were team teaching again to insure that stories chosen and seatwork selected...
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Markeeta was a beautiful and good baby from her first breath. There were no complications during her birth, and it wasn't until Markeeta was about eight months old that Donna began to sense something was not quite right. Her daughter was a little too quiet, too good. But when her pediatrician assured her nothing was...
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Most of Kinzie had a positive attitude. A few of the regular teachers still talked of the old glory days, but current students were achieving. Kinzie kids always took high honors at the Math Counts Competition and in the Math Meet of the Academic Olympics. They were winners at the District Young Authors Conference, and two...
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In his letter to Mr. Franklin, Fred Barnes had mentioned two students involved in due-process procedures for speech. They were Markeeta and Joey. Joey's parents had begun the due-process procedure in the midst of Kinzie's turmoil, before Markeeta's case was decided. Joey was mainstreamed successfully into the regular kindergarten...
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School reform was now the law. Kinzie's principal, parents, and staff had been struggling together for the past seven years to meet students' needs. They had written letters and demonstrated at board meetings to get auditory-training units for the deaf children. They had worked with outside agencies to make ear molds. They had begged...
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The most significant result of the educational reform law was the distribution of real dollars to the local schools, coupled with the power of the Local School Council to determine just how to spend them. Prior to reform there were no discretionary funds available to principals. The new law released state Chapter...
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Jennifer and Beth were very close-not like two peas in a pod- more like corn flakes and cream. Beth was the smooth surface, still quiet, the foil for snappy, crackly Jenni. With her button nose and chestnut hair cut in a mushroom style, Beth was tall for sixth grade. Jennifer by contrast was petite, with porcelain features and a...
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Reform had started with a bang! And a bong. The Interim Board cut more than 500 jobs from the central administration and shifted another 600 positions to the field. These employees now answered directly to local school principals. Jane Blatt left the system when numerous coordinator and supervisor positions were...
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In August teachers and parents got together for two days of planning; mainstreaming was one of the major topics for discussion. Teachers volunteered their time; the reward was a treat from the LSC and Mr. Franklin, lunch at Sharkos restaurant where the chicken Caesar salad was a faculty favorite. Even though they were payless days, 85 percent of the...
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For one week in 1988, Gallaudet became a household word. Deaf college students had drawn major television networks to their Washington, D.C., campus by closing it down. More than one thousand striking deaf students marched to the university board of directors' meeting, then on to the White House, and finally, to the...
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Darren spoke English as well as Markeeta, but he didn't always understand the language he was articulating. Signing in ASL clarified the meaning for Darren. Actually comprehending the message he was communicating enabled Darren to add his personal feelings to his utterances. He became Terry's most attentive pupil, and he...
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The battle of inclusion had begun. According to records filed with the u.s. Department of Education, 5500 children with disabilities were placed in regular classes in Chicago in 1991 and 1992. City principals and teachers were beginning to complain that the central office was not providing the staffing or the support they...
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Mr. Franklin initiated regular committee meetings to determine the future role of American Sign Language in Kinzie's educational program. Everyone was familiar with Unlocking the Curriculum, by Johnson, Liddell, and Erting (Washington, D.C.: Gallaudet Research Institute, 1989); and all of us had experienced the...
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Amy was not shy. Once she was enrolled in Kinzie's primary communication disorders class, she introduced herself to everyone she encountered on the playground, in the halls, and the lunchroom. She repeated, practically shouting, "Hi! My name is Amy. I'm a handicapped child." After she was here for a few months, I met Amy in the...
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Martha's Vineyard, an island five miles off the southeastern coast of Massachusetts, was first settled by Europeans around 1640. Mostly Englishmen and Wampanoag Indians created a rapidly growing community. There were very few "off-island" marriages, and hereditary deafness occurred at a rate many times higher than...
Page Count: 236
Illustrations: 5 tables, 5 figures
Publication Year: 2008