You can only imagine what goes through a parent’s mind after being told their baby can not hear. Can my child live a normal life? Can she be productive? The answer to both of those questions is yes, it is possible, and odds are greater the earlier that intervention occurs.
Located in New Providence, for over 50 years the Summit Speech School (“SSS”) has been dedicated to teaching hearing impaired infants, children and young adults to listen and speak without the use of sign language so that they are able to succeed in mainstream schools and become active participants in the hearing and speaking world. The oldest charity featured in this year’s 100th Home Sale Program, SSS was founded in 1967 following a national outbreak of Rubella that caused deafness in 20,000 infants. Today, SSS is the only non-public program of its kind in New Jersey and one of only 51 such schools in the United States.
SSS offers a specialized infant and parent program in addition to preschool classes for ages three to five. They also offer support through their itinerant and auditory programs to students who are mainstreamed into elementary, middle and high schools. Employing speech pathologists, classroom teachers and teaching assistants, SSS utilizes intensive speech, language and auditory training sessions, along with FM systems, their own hearing aids, and cochlear implants, to help children learn to maximize their listening, language and speaking skills. Since it’s founding, approximately 3,000 children from more than 230 communities throughout New Jersey have attended the School. The school services approximately 300 children from birth through high school annually.
Olivia Clark, a 15-year-old graduate of the Summit Speech Preschool, is now a freshman in high school. In middle school, she was Student Council President, took part in cross country, track, and winterguard, volunteered as a clown at several local nursing homes, and delivered the Valedictorian speech at her 8th grade graduation. Now in high school, she is on student council again, is active in Colorguard, the Robotics team, and the Fencing team as well as being an enthusiastic artist and photographer. This is typical of a vast majority of graduates.
The Summit Speech School is one of the finalist in the Sue Adler Team’s 100th Home Sale Program. All donations enable the school to provide state of the art technology and expert teachers who are deeply committed to the children’s success. To place you vote click here.
To learn more about SSS, visit their website at http://www.summitspeech.org