Working with Students Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing

There are many excellent resources and tools available online for parents and educators. We’ve compiled links to those we think may be most valuable to you, or a sample of some of the many resources from larger websites, in hopes that you’ll explore them more.

CONTACT: Robin Bliven
Director of Outreach Services







Scroll down to see links for

  • Resources from the Virginia Department of Education
  • Other resources and tools for families and professionals
  • Transition resources
  • State and national organizations

Resources from the Virginia Department of Education

Guidelines For Working With Students Who Are Deaf Or Hard Of Hearing In Virginia Public Schools (PDF)

Educational Interpreting Services (PDF)

Guidance on Evaluation and Eligibility for the Special Education Process Appendix A(Sample Forms) (Word)

The Technical Assistance Center for Children Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing, Partnership for People with Disabilities, VCU – funded by VDOE to provide training and technical assistance in the area of hearing impairment and deafness.

Virginia Network of Consultants for Professionals Working with Children Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing (VNOC) – provides consultant services for children who are deaf or hard of hearing in school divisions and state operated programs in Virginia to promote and enhance educational services for students and needed training for personnel.

Training & Technical Assistance Centers (T/TAC)– funded by VDOE, work to improve educational opportunities and contribute to the success of children and youth with disabilities (birth – 22 years).

Enhanced Scope and Sequence Plus – lesson guides featuring model differentiated lessons for SOLs

Virginia Communication Plan (Word)

Standards of Learning (SOL) and Testing: Participation and Inclusion

Center on Transition Innovations, Virginia Commonwealth University-funded by VDOE, a centralized statewide resource for educators and other stakeholders in the transition of youth with disabilities. The Center on Transition Innovations at Virginia Commonwealth University provides evidence-based resources and information along with emerging practices in the field.

Guidelines For School Division Policy Regarding Service Dogs In Virginia’s Public Schools (PDF)

Also on VDOE webpage for deaf/hard of hearing, under “Resources” , please see

  • Fast Facts: IEP Special Factors: Considerations for Students Who Are Deaf or Hard Of Hearing
  • Strategies for Teaching Mathematics to Students who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing (PDF)

Other Resources and Tools for Families and Professionals

Alexander Graham Bell Association


 American Society for Deaf Children (ASDC) a source of information for people making decisions for children who are deaf: providers, educators, legislators, and advocates.

Apps for children and adults with hearing loss

ASL Resources


Boystown Hospital Knowledge Center – including “How Do You Hear?” a 40 second video.

Can You Read My Lips? a 4 minute video featuring Rachel Kolb that demonstrates the complexity of lipreading.

Captions: Why Accessibility is So Important a very brief, very effective video that shows why captions are important in providing accessibility to students who cannot hear clearly.

Captioning ⁄ Transcribing Readiness Checklist (Word)

The Center for Accessible Technology in Sign (CATS) – is a joint project between the Atlanta Area School for the Deaf and the Georgia Institute of Technology. CATS is dedicated to providing accessibility to learning via sign language, and to enhancing language, literacy and general world knowledge for deaf learners, particularly children.

Center on Technology and Disability -Parents and service providers can use CTD to increase their capacity to advocate for, acquire, and implement effective assistive and instructional technology (AT/IT) practices,devices and services. This website was formally the Family Center on Technology and Disability ) (FCTD).

Children’s Assistive Technology Service (CATS) provides for the re-use of pediatric rehabilitation equipment and devices in Virginia. CATS serves as a no-cost resource to children with disabilities who need adaptive equipment and whose families have limited resources.

The Clarke Schools Wednesday Webinar Series is intended to make information about listening and spoken language development for children who are deaf and hard of hearing accessible to all.

Classroom Interpreting – information for interpreters, teachers, administrators, parents and students.

Conference Educational Administrators of Schools and Programs for the Deaf (CEASD)provides an opportunity for professional educators to work together for the improvement of schools and educational programs for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Cornerstones Building Blocks of Literacy – (a division of PBS Read Between the Lions) offers online, research-based literacy units for teachers of young children who are deaf or hard of hearing and use sign language.

Deaf Characters in Adolescent Literature – offers a list of books with characters who are deaf, websites, author interviews, and book reviews.

Deaf Education: Educational Enhancement for the field of Deaf Education – Collaborative website of the former and Hands and Voices, featuring “Knowledge Base”, “Jobs and Resumes”, “Collaborative Opportunities”, and “Topical Conversations”.

Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP) – promote and provides equal access to communication and learning for students who are blind, visually impaired, deaf, hard of hearing, or deaf-blind. Through funding by the U.S. Department of Education and the National Association of the Deaf, families and professionals can borrow from over 4,000 described and captioned media titles.

DHN – a news agency using American Sign Language, spoken English and captions in each broadcast

Discover Interpreting allows you to learn more about ASL-English interpreting, search for interpreter training programs and ASL or Deaf Studies programs, and more.

Educating Deaf Children from Rochester Institute of Technology’s National Technical Institute for the Deaf – International experts answer questions about choices, controversies, and decisions faced by parents and educators of children who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Engaging Video Resources – for teachers and students. These are great for providing visualswith lessons.

English Language Learners’ Tool Kit

Evidence-Based Practices for Students with Sensory Impairments, by Ferrell, Bruce, & Luckner, published by University of Florida, 2014

Expanded Core Curriculum for students who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing,revised 2013 – Iowa has identified skills that can be worked on for each of the eight content areas of the ECC: Audiology, Career Education, Communication, Family Education, Functional Skills for Educational Success, Self-Determination and Advocacy, Social-Emotional Skills, and Technology.

Federal Resources for Educational Excellence – links to many other websites containing hundreds of instructional units and activities in all subject areas, from Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP)

Funding for Audiology Services and Hearing Aids from the American Speech, Language and Hearing Association

Gallaudet University

Parents’ Package from Visual Language and Learning Center (VL2) provides information about all aspects of raising a child who is deaf or hard of hearing.

Research Briefs from the Visual Language and Visual Learning Center (VL2) of Gallaudet University present research and recommendations addressing the challenges of educating children who are deaf and hard of hearing; available in English, Spanish and Mandarin.

Graphic Organizers can be used to: (a) provide an advanced organizer for content, (b) provide assistance for difficult reading passages or concepts, (c) highlight key points, (d) preview reading material, (e) assess prior knowledge, (f) review, and (g) assess. See also

Google Apps – provides a list that professionals working with students who are deaf or hard of hearing may be interested in acquiring.

Handbook of Language and Literacy Development, 0 – 60 months – provides evidence-based information on children’s language and literacy development

Hearing First – a virtual connection point for families and professionals to assist in improving outcomes for children who are deaf or hard of hearing through Listening and Spoken Language (LSL)

How Listening Supports Learning This tutorial consists of 15 short videos, and is designed to assist educational teams in understanding the importance of auditory access to sounds and information for students who are deaf/hard of hearing and who use hearing assistive technology. It includes suggestions and tips for teachers on how to ensure optimal listening conditions in the classroom.

The Hearing Journey: The Listening Room – activities and ideas to support the practice of listening and language skills in children

How do you hear – 40 sec video from Boystown Hospital

Ideas for teaching reading, math, science, history and other subjects

Internet Teachers of English as a Second Language with online lessons, student activities, and articles, many that may be appropriate for students who are Deaf and learning English.

The Itinerant Connection – a resource specifically for itinerant teachers working with students who are deaf or hard of hearing (currently in transition.).

John Tracey Clinic – offers free distance education courses for parents of children ages birth to five with hearing loss. Course materials emphasize listening and spoken language, but can be adapted for any communication approach including sign language. Courses are available in English and Spanish, and can be accessed online or via mail.

JCIH (Joint Committee on Infant Hearing) 2007 Position Statement: Principles and Guidelines for Early Intervention After Confirmation That a Child Is Deaf or Hard of Hearing, Supplement, 2013 The appendix to this document, appendix includes a listing of broad competencies (knowledge and skills) related to the provision of early development services for children who are D/HH and their families.

Resources to help providers implement JCIH Recommendations in Appendices 2 and 3 gathered by Outreach Services, VSDB, 2015

Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education CenterResources for families and educators


Lesson Plans – offered by the International Reading Association

Listening and Spoken Language Knowledge Center of A.G. Bell offers resources and information for professionals who work with children with hearing loss who use listening and spoken language.

Family Resources

Resources for professionals

Mano a Mano provides access to trilingual interpreting resources, including a directory of Spanish English sign language interpreters

Directory of Spanish English Sign Language Interpreters

Methods and Materials for Teaching Science to Deaf Students – lesson plans, strategies for differentiating instruction, signed dictionaries of science lexicon, and more.

Mental Health services for children and adults who are deaf, hard of hearing, late deafened, or deaf-blind, provided through the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS)

More Than Baby Talk: 10 Ways to Promote the Language and Communication Skills of Infants and Toddlers – a brief guide based on the latest research findings on optimal adult-child interaction, describing ten practices that early childhood teachers can use to foster language and communication skills among infants and toddlers.

Multimedia Resources for Project-Based Learning and Flipped Classrooms – 30 online resources

National Consortium of Interpreter Education Centers (NCIEC)

National Center for Hearing Assessment and Management (NCHAM)


Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP),Ideas that Work – designed to provide easy access to information from research to practice initiatives that address the provisions of IDEA and NCLB. This website will include resources, links, and other important information that supports OSEP’s research to practice efforts.

Oxford Journal Article “Look Who’s Being Left Behind: Educational Interpreters and Access to Education for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Students” by Brenda Schick.


Access: The Fundamentals, an introduction to the nature of hearing loss and its implications for communication and learning in educational settings; provides basic information about accommodations that can make education, employment, and other activities accessible for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing

Principles and Guidelines for Early Intervention After Confirmation That a Child is Deaf or Hard of Hearing2103 Supplement to the 2007 Joint Committee on Infant Hearing (JCIH) position statement


Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf – including standards of practice for educational interpreters

Rewordify – provides free, online software that simplifies difficult vocabulary and provides definitions for those words.

See-the-Sound Visual Phonics – a literacy tool for early reading development with children who are d/hh.

Story Book Apps – provides apps in both English and American Sign Language (ASL). Features include: (a) an original story told in ASL and English, (b) easy and accessible navigation designed for children, (c) rich interactive narrative with direct English to ASL vocabulary video translation, and (d) a 170-word ASL glossary so parents can learn ASL along with their child

Supporting Success for Children with Hearing Loss

Virginia Department for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (VDDHH)

Virginia Infant and Toddler Specialist Network

Virginia Early Intervention Professional Development

Virginia’s Resource Guide for Families of Children with Hearing Loss


Accessing accommodations after high school – from PACER’s National Parent Center on Transition and Employment.

The Colorado School for the Deaf and Blind Videos The Outreach Programs is offering videos featuring a variety of young, successful adults sharing some of their life experiences. Currently five videos are available. More videos will continue to be added.

Department of Aging and Rehabilitation: Deaf Services – provides contact information for all regional vocational rehabilitation counselors for the deaf (who should be involved in transition plans of students who are deaf/hh)

I’m Determined, Virginia Department of Education’s self-determination project, offers strategies for helping middle and high school students with disabilities become college and career ready.

Pepnet2 –

  • Achieving Goals! Career Stories of Individuals Who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing: Ambitious Achievers Career stories feature individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing and who represent gender and cultural diversity, a variety of communication styles, and a range of work environments.
  • Getting a Job!– an online training focusing on the transition from school to work, developed and designed for students who are deaf or hard of hearing and the professionals who work with them.
  • Map It: What Comes Next– interactive training featuring video vignettes of students who are deaf and hard of hearing gaining self-awareness by applying real-life scenarios; for high school students transitioning to either a post-secondary education program, vocational program, or getting ready


Transition Assessment and Goal Generator – The TAGG identifies behaviors that students need to learn to increase their likelihood of post-school success

State & National Organizations & Resources

Alexander Graham Bell Association – the world’s largest membership organization promoting the use of spoken language by children and adults with hearing loss.

American Association for the Deaf-Blind

American Society for Deaf Children – organization of parents who are advocates for deaf and hard-of-hearing children.

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association – professional and consumer resources from ASHA; contains a career FAQ and a glossary of terms.

Boys Town Center for Hearing Loss in Children – Boys Town National Research Hospital’s resource for parents of babies who have just been diagnosed with a hearing loss or for families of any child who is deaf or hard of hearing.

Center for Parent Information and Resources

Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) – general information about children and youth with disabilities.

Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP) -provides services designed to support equal educational opportunity and improve the academic achievement of students who are blind, visually impaired, deaf, hard of hearing, or deaf-blind

Hands & Voices – a non-profit, parent-driven organization dedicated to supporting families of children who are deaf or hard of hearing. We are non-biased about communication methodologies and believe that families can make the best choices for their child if they have access to good information and support.

IDEA legislation

Infant and Toddler Connection of Virginia – Early Intervention (Part C, IDEA) services serving families of birth to three-years-old with developmental delays.

Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center – at Gallaudet University, working with children who are deaf worldwide.

Listen Up! – specializing in information for the deaf and hard of hearing, and especially geared to the needs of hearing impaired children and their families.

National Association of the Deaf – provides services and support for deaf individuals and their families. Includes local chapter links and articles.

National Cued Speech Association – raises awareness of Cued Speech and its applications, provides educational services, assists local affiliate chapters, establishes standards for Cued Speech and certifies Cued Speech instructors and transliterators.

Speech – Language- Hearing Association of Virginia – an association of over 700 audiologists and speech-language pathologists.

VA Association of the Deaf

Virginia Board of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology – oversees the laws and regulations that govern the practice of speech language pathologists and audiologists in Virginia.

Virginia Department for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing – works to reduce communication barriers between persons who are deaf or hard of hearing and their families and the professionals who serve them.

Virginia Department of Aging and Rehabilitative Services (DARS)

Woodrow Wilson Rehabilitation Center, PERT Program

Virginia Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program, Virginia Department of Health – the goal of Virginia’s Newborn Hearing Screening program is to identify congenital hearing loss in children by three months of age and enroll them in appropriate early intervention by six months of age.

VA Relay – enables people who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind, or speech disabled to communicate by TTY or another assistive telephone device with anyone who uses a standard phone.

Virginia Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (VRID) – the Virginia affiliate chapter of the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf