Least Restrictive Environment vs. Most Restrictive Environment
Often LRE = Least Restrictive Environment in PL 94-142 – the IDEA LAW is interpreted to mean “public school in child’s home district” but many folks have said:
– what about the socio-emotional component
– what about a sense of belonging
– what about direct instruction
– what about a natural and fully accessible language
– what about cultural literacy
– what about Deaf ways of doing and being that Deaf teachers and teachers of the Deaf know and understand and utilize????
- The deaf students who perform best academically usually are the ones whose parents have effectively communicated with them from an early age.
- Children who sign early on generally outperform those who do not sign during their early school years.
- Early language skills-both American Sign Language and spoken language- correlate with reading ability, with no evidence that one is necessarily better than the other.
- Most deaf students’ difficulties in reading are mirrored by difficulties in understanding sign language.
- Deaf and hard-of-hearing children entering school often are lagging behind hearing children in their knowledge of the world, number concepts, and problem-solving skills, not just in language.
- Deaf students do not always learn, think, or know in the same ways as hearing children.
According to Dr. Marc Marschark “86 percent of deaf students in the U.S. are in mainstreamed programs all or part of the day. In many cases, they are the only deaf or hard-of-hearing student in their school.”
Deaf schools have continually been at the mercy of state budgets and politicians who have no knowledge of Deaf culture, ASL, bilingualism and Deaf rights. Links below re: threats to Deaf schools.
A Deaf mind is a horrible thing to waste – get busy making sure Deaf folks are not automatically mandated into MRE situations
LRE vs. MRE = what’s it gonna be for ye and the wee things?
“So long as there are two deaf people upon the face of the earth and they get together, so long will signs be in use.” J. Schuyler Long (1910)
LINKS RE: DEAF SCHOOLS
threat to Deaf Schools in NY state
2 Deaf youths letters to Gov Cuomo
Mother’s experiences with children in mainstreaming, home schooling and Deaf School (additional links at the bottom also)
Save 4201 Schools Now! A short film
Texas School for the Deaf – possible lawsuits to public schools
Kansas School for the Deaf
Blog entry about possible threats to Deaf schools from Jan 29, 2009 (old but still has important information)