Broadening Perspectives: A Collaboration Between Traditionally Divisive Ideological Camps on Deaf Education

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National Center for Hearing Assessment and Management

Broadening Perspectives: A Collaboration Between Traditionally Divisive Ideological Camps on Deaf Education

Presented by: Thomas Horejas & Betsy Moog Brooks

Date/Time:  09/21/2017  
Starting time: 1:00 pm  Ending time:  2:00 pm  MST

In Fall 2016, the Moog Center, a private oral school in St. Louis, Missouri that teaches children with hearing loss to talk, joined with DEAF, Inc., a non-profit organization that focuses on advocacy and communication access for the deaf community, to pilot a program to broaden perspectives for children with hearing loss and their families. DEAF, Inc. & The Moog Center recognize that choices regarding methodology of deaf education can be divisive and there is a need to collaborate with parents and families along with their children to understand that this does not have to be the case. Through the creation of safe spaces for dialogue, parents have provided feedback indicating that there is a strong interest in understanding the possible contribution of sign language and the deaf community as a part of social identity development in the deaf child's future as a tool to develop language and social identity. Together, these organizations began offering an after-school program for the school students and their parents in an effort to break down barriers and misconceptions, including sign language, and expose children and their parents to the broader deaf community. The children engage in a variety of activities that are jointly supervised by a staff member of the Moog Center and a young deaf adult who is fluent in spoken language and sign language. The parent program is parent-driven and includes topics and activities suggested and requested by the parents who participate. This presentation will describe for the participants, through lecture and discussion, the collaborative program in which the Moog Center and DEAF, Inc. have engaged. Children's activities and parent topics and activities to date will be presented, reviewed, and informally analyzed. Parent participant perspective will be provided, as well.  

Learning Objectives: 
1. At the end of this session, participants will be able to list at least three activities for helping parents understand the perspective of the deaf community.  
2. At the end of this session, participants will be able to describe questions and/or misconceptions parents of deaf children who are learning to use spoken language may have regarding the use of sign language in the classroom as an accommodation for accessing the general education curriculum. 
3. At the end of this session, participants will be able to state the challenges of raising a child with hearing loss in a bilingual home. 

Betsy Moog Brooks - The Moog Center for Deaf Education 

Dr. Betsy Moog Brooks is the Executive Director of the Moog Center for Deaf Education. She received her Master's degree in Speech and Hearing from Washington University and is certified in Deaf Education, Behavior Disorders, Learning Disabilities, and Early Childhood Education, and is a Listening and Spoken Language Specialist. She has been in the field of Deaf Education for more than 30 years and the working in early intervention for more than 25 years. Betsy is the author of the book, My Baby and Me: A Book About Teaching Your Child to Talk. She authored a chapter in the NCHAM 2015 ebook and co-authored two chapters in 101 Frequently Asked Questions About Auditory-Verbal Practice. She has lectured throughout the US, in South America, and Europe. Betsy is part of the Moog Center for Deaf Education app team and helped to create the First 100 Words app. She recently received her Doctorate of Education in Instructional Leadership with an emphasis in Andragogy, the study of adult learners.  


Thomas Horejes - Gallaudet University 

Dr. Thomas Horejes is the former Executive Director for Deaf Empowerment Awareness Foundation, Inc (DEAF, Inc), a non-profit organization that focus on advocacy and communication access for deaf/hard of hearing individuals. He holds a Ph.D. (2009) in Justice Studies at Arizona State University. He is currently the Associate Provost of Student Success & Academic Quality at Gallaudet University. Prior to his position with DEAF, Inc., he taught at Gallaudet University for 5 years within the Department of Sociology. He was also a disability policy specialist for Phoenix, Arizona and community advocate for the Greater Los Angeles Agency on Deafness.