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AG Bell Listening and Spoken Language Specialists: 2 New Board Members

Washington, DC – July 15, 2010 – The Alexander Graham Bell Academy for Listening and Spoken Language (AG Bell Academy) today announced two new appointments to its board of directors.

Established in 2005, the AG Bell Academy is the only certification authority for professionals, known as Listening and Spoken Language Specialists (LSLS), who work with children who are deaf or hard of hearing and their families to develop spoken language and literacy through listening. LSLSs work in either therapeutic or classroom environments and focus on education, guidance, advocacy, family support and the rigorous application of techniques, strategies and procedures that promote optimal acquisition of spoken language through listening for newborns, infants, toddlers and children who are deaf or hard of hearing.

The two new members of the AG Bell Academy board of directors are Teri Ouellette, M.S.Ed, LSLS Cert. AVEd, director of St. Joseph Institute for the Deaf in Indianapolis, Ind.; and Anita Bernstein, M.Sc., Dip. Spec Ed., LSLS Cert. AVT, director of therapy and training programs for VOICE for Hearing Impaired Children in Ontario, Canada.

“The AG Bell Academy board welcomes our two newest members as recognized leaders in the field of listening and spoken language development for children with hearing loss,” said AG Bell Academy President Cheryl L. Dickson, M.Ed., LSLS Cert. AVT. “Their appointments demonstrate the AG Bell Academy’s continuing mission toward promoting the number of qualified professionals so we can meet the needs of children and families in their journey toward a listening and spoken language outcome and ensure that each child achieves his or her full potential to that end.”

Requirements for certification as a LSLS include a master’s degree or international equivalent post-graduate degree or diploma in audiology, speech-language pathology or deaf education; at least 80 hours of post-graduate study within the nine domains of knowledge, which include auditory functioning, emergent literacy and hearing and hearing technology as well as parent guidance, education and support, among other subject matter areas; a rigorous mentoring process overseen by a certified LSLS; and successful completion of a certification exam.

“The LSLS certification is the industry standard to which all early intervention programs, preschools, and K-12 public and private schools should aspire in order to ensure that their education and therapeutic teams have highly qualified, trained and certified professionals present,” continued Dickson. “As the AG Bell Academy continues to increase the number of certified professionals in this field we are expanding our geographic reach so we can better serve more children in their own communities.”

The AG Bell Academy for Listening and Spoken Language® is an independently governed, 501c(6) nonprofit subsidiary corporation of the Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. The AG Bell Academy envisions a future where individuals and families will have qualified listening and spoken language professionals available in their immediate geographic area. The AG Bell Academy is uniquely positioned to advance the revolutionary global opportunity for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to listen and talk via proven technologies and with guidance and education from certified LSLS professionals.

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