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November 1, 2017

The 38th Annual Conference on Mainstreaming Students with Hearing Loss Draws Hundreds of Professionals, Parents and Teens


November 1, 2017—Clarke Mainstream Services’ 38th Annual Conference on Mainstreaming Students with Hearing Loss was a great success, drawing hundreds of attendees, sponsors and exhibitors from across the country. This year’s event was especially significant, as Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech is celebrating its 150th Anniversary. Held on October 19 and 20 at the Best Western Royal Plaza Hotel in Marlborough, MA, the conference was kicked off by keynote speaker, Dr. Carol Flexer, who delivered a talk on Auditory Brain Development. Following Dr. Flexer’s fantastic keynote, conference participants attended workshops covering the many facets of hearing loss and its implications for learning in typical classrooms. Classroom teachers and other school staff also had the opportunity to attend an all-day short course designed to get them ready to teach a student with hearing loss for the first time.

For the 15th straight year, Clarke Mainstream Services also offered teens with hearing loss in grades 7-12 the opportunity to join together for the “Making Connections!” Program. Teens enjoyed activities designed to foster social connection, leadership skills and fun. The day also included a scavenger hunt which enabled the students to meet and interact with conference exhibitors. According to one teen, the program “is a great way to meet people with hearing loss and the hard working people who dedicate their lives [to] people with hearing loss.”

Parents of children with hearing loss also came together to share and connect with one another at a special parent luncheon on the second day of the conference. A special thank you to Christina and Renato Danese who sponsored this lunch!

Conference participants had the chance to talk to representatives from our conference exhibitors: Advanced Bionics, Clarke Schools for Hearing and Speech, Cochlear Americas, Gallaudet University, Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center, MA Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, MED-EL Corporation, National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID), Northern Rhode Island Collaborative, Oticon Pediatrics, Phonak, Supporting Success for Children with Hearing Loss and The Learning Center for the Deaf.

We are very grateful to our conference sponsors—Cochlear Americas, Gallaudet University, MED-EL, NTID and Oticon Pediatrics—and all of our conference participants and staff for helping us to make this important event happen! Save the date for our next conference back in Marlborough on October 18 and 19, 2018.