Wednesday, March 21, 2012

AFA letter to Iowa Board of Regents

Below is Audism Free America (AFA) letter to the Iowa Board of Regents 

feel free to sign the petition that was created by a concerned citizen of Iowa - Gretchen Waech re: the supt appointment

video explaining the issue in ASL by Bob Vizzini


AFA's letter

March 21, 2012

Dear Board of Regents:
It has come to our attention that you plan to appoint the superintendent from the School for the Blind to oversee the Iowa School for the Deaf.  This is inappropriate and unjust on many levels.  International documents have commented in the importance of Deaf adults taking leadership roles in matters that concern Deaf children and youth.  A superintendent that does not know the language of the students, staff, faculty and parents that s/he serves can not do a just, right and good job administering the school.  A superintendent who does not know ASL+English, is unfamiliar with Deaf culture, and has no training in Deaf education will not be able to fully supervise and is likely to make unintended mistakes.  Iowa School for the Deaf students, families, staff, and teachers deserve a SUPERINTENDENT that is qualified for the job.

Audism is attitudes and practices based on the assumption that behaving in the ways of those who speak and hear is desired and best. It produces a system of privilege, thus resulting in stigma, bias, discrimination, and prejudice—in overt or covert ways—against Deaf culture, American Sign Language, and Deaf people of all walks of life. One f the areas in which audism is heavily employed is in employment practices.  There are ample qualified Deaf ASL+English candidates for your school.  In seeking out the best qualifed superintendent for the Iowa School for the Deaf, you will also communicate loud and clear to the students of the school that they have great potential and the sky is the limit.

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions about this matter.  We are entrusting you to do right by the Deaf students and taxpayers of your state.

Let Freedom Roll,

Ruthie Jordan, Patti Durr and Karen Christie on Behalf of AFA 

PS: Please do forward this email to Jack Evans as his email address is not provided on the Board of Regents website.