First, my son is not a typical deaf kid. Most of the deaf kids we meet are seeking some sort of medical intervention related to their hearing. My son is not. He was born with a profound hearing lose. At the age of 18 months it was suggested he try a CI. After doing some research we decided against it. We decided to raise him bi/bi. He had several audiograms in the first few years. They were all pretty much the same. We were told with aids he might be able to hear a fire engine.
Over the years we have not been advised to have more audiograms. Not one professional educator or medical professional has suggested this. My son did request one in elementary school he is now almost thirteen. Every instance where one was requested the last one has been used with no problem.
We also researched the IFSP and IEP. WE found deaf kids were being tested for social and emotional problems before there was any indication of an issue. Psychological evaluations were involved in the process. I noticed that deaf kids were more likely to be labeled with behavior problem. We decided since he had a natural native first language and no sign of any other issue to refuse these tests. There was no need to set him up for a label.
We feel that there is no need to treat his deafness as a medical issue because we are not seeking any medical intervention. Maybe we are making a big mistake but we are willing to take that chance. So far he is doing great and testing academically above typical deaf children. Socially and emotionally he seems to be doing just fine.
So back to the contest. The rules assume all deaf kids would naturally have a current audiogram. My son has participated in deaf contests and camps before. They always accept his old one with no question. He is also in a public school which could easily verify he is still deaf. He also attended the state deaf school up until 6th grade. They would be happy to verify he is in fact really deaf. The deaf school mandates an audiogram for admission. So I have a well rounded , confident clever Deaf kid. What I don't have is a deaf kid with a current audiogram.
So my point is, it is easy for kids with more hearing to enter the contest. He is too deaf to use the phone or learn to talk but he has to go pay for a test to prove he is deaf. Ironic? Well we just think it is funny. It also gives us an opportunity to question.
I was told to "deal with it!" . The idea that I don't "deal with it" is again funny. I "deal" with "it". So does my son. He doesn't try and pass as hearing. He is a teacher by default every day of his life. He does however question. Some times we find people are so used to doing things one way and it isn't a way that benefits the deaf child. If I just deal with it every time we are presented with something we don't agree with how does that benefit my son?
Here is an example. I am now dealing with an interpreter schedule issue. He has two qualified interpreters working two week shifts. The problem comes when the transition happens. There is a catch up time because the language at the school is unique. It is an art school, The district wants to keep it the way it is because their stance in the past has been kids get too dependent if they have one. This does not apply to my son who is almost too independent. So would you suggest I just accept this while my son's education suffers and there is an easy fix? Maybe because that is just the way it is done? The contest issue is funny this issue is not.
Someone suggested I should allow him to decide. I did. I don't decide for my son what he does I just advocate until he is old enough to do it himself. I was surprised to hear from his principal he signed up for morning announcement auditions. The announcement is broadcast over a PA system with no video. My kid has balls and navigates his life pretty well without me deciding for him.
My son thought this contest would be fun. The hassle of getting an updated audiogram just for this has taken the fun out of it.