- Associated Press - Friday, October 10, 2014

BRATTLEBORO, Vt. (AP) - A coalition of deaf and hard-of-hearing residents and their allies wants Vermont to re-open the Austine School for the Deaf as a public school and create a commission to address their concerns.

The Austine School closed in June because of dwindling enrollment and financial problems, and a parent organization that coordinated numerous programs and services also shut down.

Mary Essex, president of the Vermont Association of the Deaf, told Vermont Public Radio (https://bit.ly/1vQPsm8) that the group wants lawmakers to create an agency or commission to handle such coordination and to establish a public school for deaf children.

Administration Secretary Jeb Spaulding says it is unlikely the state will re-open Austine or create a new school for the deaf given the state’s finances and the popularity of mainstreaming.

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Information from: WVPS-FM, https://www.vpr.net

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