Parent Satisfaction of Bloomfield Hills Schools’
Deaf and Hard of Hearing Program Services
Deaf and hard of hearing children are a particular disability group that requires specialized knowledge, support, and resources to succeed within the educational system. Ninety percent of deaf and hard of hearing children are born to hearing parents who typically have had little or no former contact with these types of children nor do they have knowledge of deaf related issues. These children may be one of the few, or perhaps only, deaf or hard of hearing student(s) in their school district so, subsequently, parents may lack peer parental support. These parents rely on early intervention services as well as seek a variety of additional support services for their deaf or hard of hearing (DHH) child from the school system for guidance in how to navigate the process of raising and supporting their deaf child. To best service the needs of the deaf student and their family, school systems should seek parental input regarding the school’s DHH services.
In the state of Michigan, the Bloomfield Hills Deaf and Hard of Hearing Program serves as a model for Deaf and Hard of Hearing mainstream services. This program serves as a regional center for Deaf and Hard of Hearing students residing in Oakland County with referrals to the program generated from the original district Directors of Special Education (Bloomfield Hills Schools, n.d.). Local districts also refer DHH students to the BHSDHH Program when the services the student needs exceeds their district’s resources.
“The Bloomfield Hills Deaf and Hard of Hearing Program provides academic instruction to DHH students within the general curriculum through services that support each student’s learning needs as determined by their Individualized Education Planning team” (Bloomfield Hills Schools, n.d.). The BHSDHH Program has an Early Intervention Program as well as a Pre-School through High School Program. Instruction is provided in either a Total Communication school environment or an Auditory/Oral school environment. Students attend classes either within a DHH classroom with staff that are DHH certified, within a co-taught classroom, or within the general education classrooms.
As the student transitions from early intervention into school, the philosophy regarding support services changes from a family-centered approach to a child-centered education system approach (Jamieson, Zaidman-Zait, & Poon, 2011). In a family-centered approach, professionals provide information, guidance, and support to parents with the objective of empowering them in their ability to support their child’s needs (Meadow-Orlans & Sass-Leher, 1995). As the child enters the school system, services shift from supporting the family to supporting the child’s education and development. At this point, there is a larger focus on parental involvement, which is comprised of attitudes and behaviors such as helping with...