Deaf Education Instructional Options

Birth to Age 5

  • Early Access (Birth to Age 3)
    One certified teacher for the deaf and hard of hearing works with children birth to age 3. Early access services may include home visits, play group and a preschool program. Home visits entail working with both the parents and their deaf or hard of  hearing child.  Play group and the preschool are located in the Capitol View Elementary School and provide a language rich environment.

  • Preschool (Age 3 to Age 5)
    The preschool is full day and provides individual and developmentally appropriate activities focused on language, literacy, and pre-academic skills. It, too, is housed at Capitol View Elementary School.

Cluster Programs (Kindergarten – 12th Grade)
The deaf and hard of hearing student attends classes instructed by a certified deaf educator who focuses on language and literacy development across all curriculums. The instruction is presented both orally and in sign language.  This type of instruction follow the communication and literacy policy established by the district. The amount of services and placement in this program is determined by the Individualized Education Program (IEP).

The following buildings have deaf and hard of hearing classrooms. 

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Itinerant Services
Certified teachers for the deaf and hard of hearing provide support for the regular classroom teacher and the deaf and hard of hearing student placed within the mainstream environment at schools in Des Moines, other than the cluster programs. This support ranges, as determined by the IEP team, from consultation with the regular education teacher to one-on-one instruction for the student.

Student and Family Support

  • Free Parent Sign Language Classes
    Sign language classes are offered for the parent in the program during the evening with child care provided.

  • Student Deaf Clubs
    There are two deaf and hard of hearing clubs available for elementary through high school students.

Available Support Services
The additional support services are available, as determined by the IEP:

  • Speech/Language Pathologist

  • Audiologist

  • Interpreter

  • Reading Specialist

  • Psychologist for the Deaf