Pictured above is the Year 2000 entering Kindergarten class enrolled in Deaf & Hard of Hearing programs located in the John Powers Center (Vernon Hills, IL). Fast-forward thirteen years to the picture below of nine of the graduates of the Class of 2013 at Grayslake North High School. Several students are in both pictures.
For many of the teachers, interpreters and support staff within SEDOL programs for the Deaf & Heard of Hearing, the past thirteen years have passed by so very quickly. Some of the staff actually began working with the students when they turned three years of age. Now, these students are poised to leave SEDOL support, having come to the point of moving to higher education as independent adults.
Several of the students in the picture below will relocate to the Rochester Institute of Technology (Rochester, NY) and its internal school, the National Technical Institute for the Deaf, intending to pioneer careers in emerging technology and engineering. Others will remain locally, enrolling in the College of Lake County with intent to craft careers in medical and health services, culinary arts and the automotive industry. One student will enroll in Harper College in Palatine, IL, having an affinity for mathematics. Another is considering a path into college that would pair with support to deaf education programs as a paraprofessional with interpreter skills.
SEDOL staff understand that when working especially with students with challenges, time is of the essence. The school years must always be fully planned with the intent of developing a little more success with each passing school day. The day does come when our students expect to move beyond SEDOL programs and services. Thanks to the dedication and perseverance of employees within SEDOL, such days are cause for celebration.
Congratulations to the many 2013 graduates of SEDOL High School and Transition Service programs. And thank you, SEDOL teachers, paraprofessionals, support staff and administrators for preparing our graduates for the adult world ahead.