The Advocate is on a roll with yet another headline slamming Louisiana School for the Deaf. The latest headline touts “New leader sought for deaf school: Move follows recent release of highly critical report.” Since most people only read the headlines of news stories, it is a shame that most people are walking away from such headlines with the impression that Louisiana School for the Deaf is in shambles. They would think, according to this latest headline, that the “new leader” being sought is none other than the director of the School for the Deaf and that a change in leadership is due to a report that was “highly critical” of the school. However, upon reading the article, we learn that the leader in question is actually the superintendent of three schools in Special School District and the report referenced is a report about SSD, as well as all three schools it embodies.
I attended the public meeting at which the aforementioned report was presented by the review team that wrote it. I was struck by the overwhelmingly positive comments that the review team made about all three schools in Special School District, including Louisiana School for the Deaf! I downloaded the review team’s PowerPoint presentation to us, as well as the report itself, from BESE’s website. Reporter Will Sentell has accurately, albeit selectively, presented certain findings in the report; however, it is astonishing what he left out. What Sentell does not mention in his comments about Louisiana School for the Deaf are praises that the review team gave to LSD. First, they commended the School for the Deaf for the “pride” the students have in their school as a “cultural Mecca, a place where they have a strong Deaf identity.” Second, the review team praised the school leadership team for having “great ideas on how to make the school a prime center for Deaf education.” Third, the staff at LSD was lauded for its commitment “to working with students” and wanting “to improve themselves as educators and communicators for the betterment of their students.” Lastly, the review team acknowledged LSD’s “strong vocational program which can lead to competitive employment” for the deaf students it educates. Missing from Sentell’s article was the mention of any of these affirmations.
Dear reader of The Advocate, when you see a headline, by all means read the entire article. Compare the headline to the text of the article. Ask yourself critical questions about word choice, the inclusion (and exclusion) of certain facts, and the missing perspective of the subjects of the article. Caveat lector! Let the reader beware!
retired teacher, Louisiana School for the Deaf
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Letters: Headline on story was misleading have 641 words, post on www.theadvocate.com at March 18, 2018. This is cached page on Auto News. If you want remove this page, please contact us.