The Danish school also didn’t answer to our email, so we had to come uninvited. The principal greeted us perplexedly, and said that she had seen the email, but decided not to answer. She said that they didn’t have any time at all at the moment.
Nevertheless, as we showed up there anyway, we were allowed to observe one lesson.:)
There is no school for deaf children in Copenhagen. Like in Helsinki, the school was disbanded, and the remaining
classes were transferred to an ordinary school. So, there are 19 deaf children studying at the school, and these are 2-3 classes. All the classes have children of various ages.
A question that arises right away is “Where are deaf children in Denmark?” Nineteen children for the whole school is incredibly few. The teachers told us that the overwhelming majority of children receive cochlear implantation soon after birth, they go through rehabilitation and then enter ordinary schools. Thus, the special school turned out useless due to the small number of children, and it was closed.
Children are only taught by one deaf teacher, the others are hearing. They also use the bilingual teaching method (http://deaf-planet.ru/about-surdo/metody-obucheniya-g..).
The lesson was held by a deaf teacher in the sign language. Sveta understood it pretty well, and translated it to me.
Children at the school study the same subjects as at an ordinary school. They also have a second language, English. The teachers regret that at ordinary schools there are two foreign languages, and at the school for deaf children there is only one. There are plans to introduce a second one. The timetable includes lessons in sign language, history and culture of deaf people several times a week. It was unusual to find religion in the timetable. For these lessons, children are divided into groups according to religion, and each group has their lesson.
The school isn’t residential, and all the children go home after lessons.
Denmark only has three schools where deaf children study. They face the same requirements as the hearing children. At graduation, everyone has to take obligatory examinations in the Danish language and mathematics on the level of the hearing children. Everyone can enter a university. Every person with hearing loss has a quota for free hours with a sign language interpreter. If needed, everyone can order an assistant for lectures at university, visits to banks or to pharmacies.
What was surprising is that no deaf person in Denmark receives disability benefits! There were benefits before, but now they were all cut out. All the people are equal and working.
I painstakingly collected all the memories about the school in Denmark and about this lesson. At that moment, I had such a high fever that I barely remembered anything! I questioned Sveta about it and tried to revive the memories.
However, we have what we have! The principal suggested that we come again. And we managed to film a video! So, certainly none this was in vain.:)