As the first permanent school for the deaf in the United States, the birthplace of American Sign Language, and a nationally renowned leader in providing comprehensive educational programs and services for deaf and hard of hearing students, the American School for the Deaf (ASD) focuses on meeting the learning needs of deaf and hard of hearing children, from birth through age 22. The School maintains a lengthy tradition of national and international leadership and innovation in deaf education. We have recently expanded our services to include non-verbal hearing children on the Autism Spectrum, as these students benefit greatly from access to non-verbal communication methods. Our purpose is to use the bilingual (English and American Sign Language) model to enhance the acquisition of effective communication skills and education for our students, and to continually refine our programs to best meet their evolving needs.
ASD programs include: CORE, an academic program for preschool through twelfth grade; the PACES Residential Treatment Program, which addresses the unique needs of deaf and hard of hearing children and youth, whose emotional or and behavioral challenges prevent them from being served in more traditional settings and TRANSITION SERVICES, tailored to meet our students’ individual aspirations and post-secondary plans—whether they choose to pursue a college degree or immediately enter the workforce. ASD also offers two summer programs—Extended School Year on campus, and Camp Isola Bella in Salisbury, CT.
ASD has run Camp Isola Bella for deaf/hard of hearing children and CODAs (children of deaf adults) since 1964. Isola Bella offers campers aged 8-18 a safe, friendly environment to learn, socialize and interact with their peers, building self-identity, confidence and leadership skills through daily activities. The camp curriculum aims to provide educational opportunities in a non-academic setting to reduce the risk of academic regression during the summer months.