Sunday, April 30, 2017

A Child's Thoughts In Favor of Texas Senate Bill 354, the Lead-K Bill

Today, my daughter Anastasia wrote a paragraph of her thoughts on Deaf and Hard of Hearing children being language-ready for kindergarten, in favor of Texas Senate Bill 354 of the 85th Legislative Session, also known as the Lead-K Bill.  The caption for this bill is "Relating to language acquisition for children less than eight years of age who are deaf or hard of hearing." This bill was filed by Senator Kirk Watson who represents most of Travis County (where Austin is) and all of neighboring Bastrop County.

I'd told her that this particular bill, that we had a conversation about earlier this month, was going to have a hearing happening on it this coming Tuesday morning, May 2nd. She wanted to go but I told her she's going to school and she could write something that I could turn in for her.

Here it is, all in her own words!

Deaf and hard of hearing children shouldn’t be denied confirmation of a proper language. If you don’t agree, look at this as if there were no spoken English test. Your hearing child would have to know ASL to have a ready language for kindergarten. Your child would have to know a language they wouldn’t normally use. That is how it is for deaf and hard of hearing kids. 

Anastasia Withrow
A hearing 11 year-old from a Deaf family
(location omitted)

Parents' note: Hearing children (under 18 years old) of Deaf adults are known in the Deaf community as KODAs (Kid of Deaf Adults).