What is the Echo Center?
What Is the Echo Center?
The Echo Center is certified as a nonpublic school (NPS) within Echo Horizon School. It’s not a separate place, but rather a program that supports students who are deaf or hard of hearing (DHH) in the mastery of listening and spoken language.
Fifteen percent of Echo Horizon’s students are DHH and use hearing technology. Through the Echo Center program, they learn alongside their hearing peers, who make up 85 percent of the school.
Echo Horizon School was founded in 1983 by Carol Proctor and Kent Landsberg, but the Echo Center is even older—it was established in 1970. Although the Echo Center is for DHH students, all of our students benefit from this unique educational model.
How Does the Echo Center Benefit All Students?
DHH and hearing students learn and play together, developing empathy, an appreciation of difference, and enhanced communication skills, such as always being sure to make eye contact when speaking. General education teachers and Echo Center teachers work together, which allows for differentiation through small group instruction, scaffolding language, and checking for understanding. In addition, the classroom hearing technology helps all students clearly hear the person who is speaking.
How Do Echo Center Students Learn in the Classroom?
Our DHH students don’t use sign language. They use technology to listen and speak. The technology is both personal (hearing devices such as cochlear implants, hearing aids, or BAHA) and classroom (the Roger DM system). DHH students have Echo Center teachers who work with them in the classroom, in addition to their general education teacher. All Echo Center teachers have master's degrees from accredited training programs that specialize in the listening and spoken language approach of deaf education and have a California DHH Specialist credential.
What Is the Purpose of this Educational Model?
The Echo Center is not only a unique program, it is the foundation of our school. Echo Horizon School was founded on the idea of an inclusive, diverse education and our community lives that every day. Our graduates are caring, kind, upstanders who strive to make the world a better place for us all.