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February 8, 2017

Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech Partners with Frost Valley YMCA to Serve Children with Hearing Loss


February 8, 2017—Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech is pleased to announce a new partnership with Frost Valley YMCA in Claryville, New York. This exciting collaboration will allow Frost Valley—a renowned summer camp in the Catskills of New York—to better serve campers with hearing loss, and will ensure that each child has all the support and equipment necessary to enjoy a traditional camp experience alongside their peers with typical hearing.

For 150 years, Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech has taught children who are deaf or hard of hearing to listen and talk. Clarke serves children from birth to age 18, who use hearing technology (including cochlear implants or hearing aids), to maximize their access to sound, and receive individualized support from Clarke’s teachers and therapists. Among a wide range of programs, Clarke offers Early Intervention (birth to three) services, preschool classes, a K-8 program and a team of itinerant teachers of the deaf who serve students in mainstream school settings. The majority of children who receive Early Intervention services at Clarke and attend our Preschool Program transition to local public, private or charter schools for kindergarten where they learn and thrive alongside their peers with typical hearing.

Frost Valley’s prestigious legacy as a premier outdoor camping center since 1885 makes this partnership a very exciting prospect for families seeking a mainstream camping experience for their child who is deaf or hard of hearing. And with over 30 years’ experience running summer camps for students with hearing loss, Clarke is well-poised to help establish a supportive setting at Frost Valley and train the people who will be working with the children—providing continued support to staff and ensuring that the children are having a great camp experience.

"One of the best parts of Frost Valley YMCA's summer camps is campers getting to enjoy being a kid. We value creating a camp community that is inclusive of all. Our new partnership with Clarke will help us serve children with hearing loss who communicate using listening and spoken language," said Dan Weir, Director of Camping Services.

“Frost Valley's values of diversity, inclusiveness and respect are what we strive for when mainstreaming a student with hearing loss,” said Claire Troiano, Director of Mainstream Services at Clarke. “So our expertise with hearing loss, coupled with Frost Valley's values, offers kids with hearing loss the opportunity to have a blast at one of the top summer camp programs in the country.”

Eligible campers can select from any of Frost Valley’s on-site camp programs during summer camp Session 3, July 30 – August 11. Frost Valley staff will be trained in advance to work with children who are deaf or hard of hearing who listen and talk, and a teacher of the deaf from Clarke will be present on site for the entirety of Session 3. To learn more and register, visit frostvalley.org/camp/specialty-camps/clarke-school-partnership.