My son is thirteen and mainstreamed full time. A few years back I would have never imagined that. I am a big advocate for bi/bi education and allowing deaf kids to be involved in deaf culture. I wanted my son to learn language in a natural visual way. I thought I was doing everything right. Same old story.
As he grew he out paced his peers which brought on the dilemma of what to do with him. He didn't fit in with his own culture. The other kids didn't go home to a family that signed. The other families didn't do what we do. We are a needle in a hay stack.
He is now at a charter art school. It is a huge deal that he got in. He scored 90% on his state reading test last year...... whoopee. By the way I hate those tests. The thing that kills me is he is Deaf.
So every day he goes to school. He puts up with so much crap just to get information. I get so frustrated but he just moves on. Yes, he has friends but they use a text screen and home signs to communicate. Maybe some folks think that is character building but I know as a child I was able to have open free conversations.. one third of his new education involves music. Did I mention he is really deaf?
Tonight he tells me he misses deaf culture. I have two reactions. One is relief. One is sadness. I am relieved he still has roots with the deaf community. He will always find it. Maybe I am relieved because we invested everything in that. I am sad because he doesn't have the access he once did.
My kid is much smarter than me. He tells me he just needs a week. He just needs to see his old friends. He tells me he loves his new school because he is an artist. His plan is to make a documentary. He will tell the world what it is like to be deaf. He wants to make a film about the world of being a deaf kid from all angles. He is planning this so he can go to WSD and see his friends. He is also planning this to teach hearing people that deaf people have a different way of socializing, communicating and being..
So he tells me he will ask for the support of his two favorite teachers. He tells me that a friend in college already volunteered to direct.
So it is 4 am and I am done writing this post. If you are a mom you understand why I am awake.