Okay. Now you’ve done it society. You’ve REALLY done it!!
What kind of butt head in charge believes that a three year old child, who is deaf, is going to be a VIOLENT threat by using a name sign?
It is not like he’s tossing up gang signs that his parents taught him at an early age. He is not going around to other children, promising to bust a cap in their ass. He is simply attempting to communicate in the hearing world because he is deaf.
The child uses something called “Signed Exact English”. Or “SEE”.
SEE is an artificial system that was devised in 1972 that has been proven to function as the first language of children with hearing loss. It is based on the more well known system of ASL, or “American Sign Language”.
Based on the studies that I had years ago in Sign Language, everyone has their own “name sign”. It distinguishes an individual. For example: In a classroom setting, there may be more than one student with a common first name, such as “Michael” or “Jennifer”. Each individual name sign helps tell one from the other.
But because of the “Zero Tolerance” policy that this school system has in place, it is essentially taking away this child’s identity. This is complete garbage!
It really is sad to read about this story. It just feels like a shot to the nuts for me. And to those who have lifelong ADA issues. I have my hearing. And at one point, I had been studying to be a Sign Language interpreter. And so there is a part of me that is crushed to read that this innocent three year old child who is at a disadvantage in the world is being shut down and pushed back. All because of his own name sign might look like a friggin’ weapon?!?!?!?!???
This child is there to learn and interact in a world that is very scary. He’s not there to be pushed aside, just because some pompous legislation.
I am all for safety in schools and for the safety of our children. But this “Zero Tolerance” stuff is seriously abused, outdated, and quite honestly… ridiculous.
I hope, I REALLY HOPE that the school system changes its tune. Because how much further back can you push those who are supposed to be protected by the ADA? Especially those who cannot defend themselves.