Wednesday, March 16, 2011


I talk with people every once in a while about G's School. They are surprised to learn that it is free and that it has a residential option. Without fail they say "I could never send my child away."

Having a deaf child and letting them attend a school for the deaf is a lot like adoption. You're not giving them up. You're giving them more.

When we drive to school each day to drop G off I see kids. Regular kids hanging out and associating with their peers. Laughing, joking, part of the group. That's what it means to be a deaf kid at the school for the deaf: you're normal.

Perhaps a lot of parents think how they as hearing people would feel weird and uncomfortable at a deaf school. But for deaf kids it's the only place where they have a critical mass of kids like them to just be a kid. Never again in their life will they have this opportunity.

I think about the band in HS. I loved it. Yet outside of a school setting most adults don't get to be a part of something like that. I did get to be in band in college and then teach band. I even got to be part of a brass band. That was awesome. I loved those opportunities to belong and create with a group.

A deaf child going through their entire education in isolation misses out on so much. So many of their social talents will never develop. How can they?

There are some I'm sure who are sending them away because they have never learned to interact with them. There are a lot of people who send their kids (hearing and deaf) to the neighborhood school who don't interact with their kids either. But somehow that they sleep in the same house at night means they love them?

The parents that can, change their lives to move here. Others can't. So they send their kids here.
It's about loving them enough to let them go, grow, and live.

No comments: