“Out of the mountain of despair, a stone of hope.”-Martin Luther King, Jr. [Happy Birthday, MLK!]
I still do not understand how could LEAD-K allows “Speech training [Oralism], Cued Speech, Signed Exact English [SEE], Pidgin Sign Language [PSE], and Cochlear Implant [CI]” in the video. It shows that LEAD-K fails to teach American Sign Language (ASL) fails in everything. It is true that all gifts of nature, the ability to use ASL cannot be imparted; it can be only developed, and one of the oldest complaints against Deaf Education is that they turn the Deaf child into a learned speaking-dunce…determined users of ASL are few.
For most hearing teachers of the Deaf, using ASL is not important anymore, only their mind is set in motion by only a spoken stimulus—for example, Cued Speech, Speech training, and Cochlear Implant. The question, did LEAD-K knew about this? Oh, come on!
The worst part is that LEAD-K—on the core team, none of them are even experts on ASL or even ASL curriculum team. For example, the state of California, there are three experts on ASL who are on ASL curriculum team, LEAD-K never bother to invite them at all. It’s a slap on the face!
In Deaf Education, children are encouraged to act stupidly because they are bored. By filling up their days with dull repetitive listening and speaking tasks that make little or no claim to their attention or demands on their intelligence, most Deaf school children are answer-centered rather than problem-centered. Being able to hear in Deaf Education is an acquired habit founded on practice, like acting like a hearing person.
How well Deaf children struggle with Cued Speech, for example, depends on how much of listening and speaking they have done, and it is never successful. They start to think about hearing: they enter into a body of thought and try to hear. The ability to listen and speak, for example, Cued Speech is passive, and I have yet to read about how children with CI seek the habit of respectful skepticism—respectful in the sense that it rests on evidence and carefully established argument but is never asking questions such as “why did hearing person yell at Deaf person for?” Cued Speech or Cochlear Implant DOES NOT ADVANCE ENGLISH SKILLS AT ALL.
Deaf Education everywhere is ours! ASL is ours! It is our academy! It is not just place for people to come for Speech training, Cued Speech, Signed Exact English, Pidgin Sign Language, and Cochlear Implant. LEAD-K needs to change its pedagogy and tell the truth that ASL and Deaf people are still oppressed. LEAD-K must be responsible for demonstrating accountability for ASL and effectively communicating the accomplishments, needs and value of Deaf people to the public and to the world to make it a better place, to have the world appreciate and celebrate ASL and its Deaf culture as well, too.
Copyright © 2017 Jason Tozier
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