The Auditory-Oral Program (AOP) is a specialized program for children who are deaf or have a profound hearing loss to learn how to listen and talk through the benefit of technology - hearing aids or cochlear implant. The program provides children intensive auditory, speech and language training and habilitation to develop the necessary readiness skills for successful mainstream experiences back in their home districts. The program includes daily instruction with Oral Teachers of the Deaf in the classroom as well as daily auditory training with an auditory-oral speech language pathologist. The AOP has inclusive early childhood and elementary classrooms currently located at Orchard Farms Elementary School in Cranston. The early childhood program has hearing peer models who attend the program daily, while the elementary students have regular education mainstream opportunities in the classrooms at Orchard Farms. The classrooms have been specifically acoustically engineered for optimal access to spoken language.
In addition, the AOP provides outreach services to children back in their home district via classroom consultation, direct service, and professional development to staff working with children with hearing losses.
The AOP is expanding to provide services and consultation for children from birth to three years. In this capacity, the program can support families seeking an auditory-oral course of intervention. A multi-disciplinary collaboration with Early Intervention will create the opportunity for parent-toddler groups to facilitate best practice in auditory-oral habilitation.