School helps graduates transition from hearing impaired to being prepared

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- They may be good listeners, but some students don't always hear what is going on in the classroom.

With that in mind, local school is helping its graduates transition from hearing impaired to being prepared.

It is happening at the Heuser Hearing & Language Academy. All of the students are either deaf or hard-of-hearing, but with some help, they're now graduating and ready to join the larger population of students at other schools.

You could say it is definitely a case where the tassels are worth the hassle. 

"It's very big because it's kind of an end to an era for her; she has been here really since birth, at Heuser Hearing & Language Academy," said Monique Baker, a parent.

Brian and Monique Baker's daughter, Abby, is one of more than a dozen 2014 graduates at Heuser Hearing & Language Academy.

"Without this place, there's no way she would be ready to go into mainstream school -- with what they teach them and the way they're able to teach them. They have experience with deaf and hard-of-hearing children, so they're able to prepare them for the outside world," said Baker.

And that's the goal, from hearing impaired to being prepared for kindergarten or 1st grade.

"We want them to just mainstream -- to just be seamlessly enter schools, you know, so you don't know they have a hearing loss -- to fill that gap before they have one," said Debbie Garvue, Education Director for Heuser Hearing & Language Academy.

And just like the butterflies they release started out in cocoons, the young graduates have also grown wings and now head to schools across Kentuckiana.

"We make sure that everything is ready to go, so that when they leave us, they are 100 percent prepared," said Garvue.

And whether it's JCPS, private school or southern Indiana, Heuser has already been there to make sure students like Abby succeed.

"Whether it be some kind of noise reduction in the classroom, whether a sound system needs to be added to the classroom -- everything that Abby needs has already been suggested by our team, and has already been implemented by the school,"explained Garvue.

That's why, in addition to the smiles, you might even see a few tears from a parent.

"So it is absolutely a bittersweet day; we're excited for her to move on and be growing up, but we are...if we could send her here for all 12 grades, we would," said Baker.

The students may be leaving, but they're always part of the Heuser family.  That's because the school continues to support students throughout their education.

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