Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Therapy dogs help Whitman, Lafayette, CPMA and Madison deaf, hard of hearing students

All San Diego Unified students are expected to receive their high school diplomas and degreed, four-legged visitors to four San Diego Unified campuses are helping deaf, hard of hearing students to reach that goal.

Specially trained collies Lana and Amos, trained by Michael Neu and his wife, Karen Meyer, have had a significant positive effect on academics for students who are deaf/ hard-of-hearing at Whitman, Lafayette, CPMA and Madison, said Jeanne Cicchetto, a San Diego Unified Resource Teacher in the deaf/hard-of-hearing program.

"Regular visits with these collies have provided students with an opportunity to learn about canine care and how hearing dogs can assist people with hearing loss both in their homes and in the community," she said. "Students return to their classwork with an increased ability to focus and an obvious feeling of well-being. Improved communication skills, independence and self-esteem are other benefits the students exhibit after their canine visits."

For more information on the program, contact Cicchetto at 858-490-8412.