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Exclusive: Inside the Deaf School

Wednesday, January 28, 2009 - 6:25pm

The School for the Deaf is back in business after sex abuse allegations closed the campus. Today FNBR was the only T.V. station to go behind the gate.

When the director called it quits back in November, filling his position became a top priority, not only for school officials, but for parents too. Still, the search continues.

It’s been two months since sexual assault allegations shut down the Louisiana School for the Deaf and sparked the resignation of the school’s director. Interim Director Liz Moore says several people have been interviewed for the position, but so far, no one has met the school’s requirements. “I don’t want a date to drive that decisions, we want the skills sets and ability and those characteristics that will bring to LSD the needed leadership to drive that decision.”

The school has made several changes to improve security on campus, including the installment of 174 surveillance cameras. But the school’s closing also hurt students, where it matters most, in the classroom. An additional 15 minutes have been added to class time and the school plans to remain open during the Mardi Gras break to help catch up on missed work and to help improve that teacher-student communication.

High School Supervisor Carol Bell says, “We also have staff in each of the elementary and middle school working on communication with the students.”

Teachers are now required to sign at all times and attend special sign language classes. As for parents, since the school’s closing, LSD has created a parent command center on their website. From grades to discipline, parents can now monitor their child’s progress, even from years in the past.

“We’re really proud of what we’re doing and we have ongoing initiatives that we are addressing.”

The school also has a new emergency text messaging system, similar to the ones found at many Louisiana universities and colleges.