Teresa Clark, Special Education Supervisor
Andrew Johnson Bulding, 8th Floor, Phone (865) 594-1521
Janet Thurman, Special Education Consultant
Karns Annex Building A, Phone (865) 539-3046
Knox County Schools Hearing Services Department is divided into 2 areas:
- Hearing Services Program and
- Audiology Services Program.
Our staff consists of 1 special education supervisor, 1 consultant, 4 audiologists, 6 hearing specialists/deaf educators, 2 transcribers, 10 educational interpreters, 4 technicians, 1 paraprofessional, and 1 secretary. Our dedicated staff has extensive training, education, and experience working with students who are deaf and hearing impaired.
HEARING SERVICES PROGRAM
Knox County Schools Hearing Services Program personnel provides services and support to students who are deaf and hearing impaired, 3-22 years of age. A full continuum of services is provided from consultation to comprehensive developmental classrooms based on need and determined by each student’s Individual Education Program (IEP). These services may be implemented at the student’s zoned school or at a site-based program available at the preschool, elementary, middle, and high school levels. Services may be provided in the areas of: auditory training, speech and language development, academic achievement, socialization, self-advocacy, and interpreting/transliterating for students.
Knox County Schools supports the aural/oral and total communication methods of training students who are deaf and hearing impaired. Each student receives academic instruction in an environment most appropriate to meet his or her individual needs. The intention of our program is to facilitate each student to maximize his or her learning potential by providing a range of unique tools and techniques. Our program promotes the most expressive communication method possible for students within the least restrictive environment.
The majority of our students who are deaf and/or hearing impaired graduate from high school with regular education diplomas and attend colleges throughout the United States. Many of our students have attended the University of Tennessee, Gallaudet University, Pellissippi State Technical Community College, and Rochester Institute of Technology/National Technical Institute for the Deaf.
AUDIOLOGY SERVICES PROGRAM
The Audiology Services Program staff provides services in three areas: screening, follow-up testing, and audiological management of hearing impaired students.
Screening - takes place on the mobile Hearing Van and includes preschoolers (3-5 yrs. old) enrolled in a Knox County program, kindergarten students, third grade students, and students in 1st grade new to Knox County Schools. Tympanometry, a test of middle ear function, and audiometry, a test of hearing acuity, are conducted with each student at his/her school.
Follow-up Testing – Testing is conducted on the mobile Hearing Van and includes students who failed screening and other students who have been identified in prior years. The van is equipped with an acoustically sound-treated room. Otoscopy, tympanometry, and audiometry are conducted with each student. The test results are recorded on an audiogram.
The screening and follow-up testing program involves testing approximately 15,000 students each school year. Each year students are identified with hearing impairments which are significant enough to impact their educational performance. The loss may be a conductive hearing decrease, a permanent hearing loss (sensorineural), or a combination of both. Medical management is indicated for all types of hearing loss for treatment and investigation of amplification (for example, hearing aids, FM systems, cochlear implant).
Audiological Monitoring – The audiologist may provide the following services whether or not the child is eligible for special education support: audiological assessment, monitoring of individual amplification (hearing aids, cochlear implant, and FM systems), inservicing staff, participating in Individual Education Program (IEP) teams (for eligible students), consultation with school personnel, and coordination with outside agencies.
Mission - The Knox County Schools speech-language, hearing, and vision personnel assess, identify, and program for students with communication and sensory disabilities. Our goal is to identify their needs, support their education, and facilitate their development to become active members of a diverse global society.
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