After The Bell: Deaf Action Center

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by CHRIS FLANAGAN / WFAA-TV

wfaa.com

Posted on February 1, 2010 at 7:13 PM

DALLAS — Golf is known as a "quiet" game. But for a Dallas teenager, it's silent.

When Frank Alvarado isn't walking the hallways at Woodrow Wilson High School,  there's a good chance he's walking the fairways. Frank is an avid golfer -- who just happens to be deaf.

"I grew up watching TV and wanted to learn how to play golf from watching TV," he said. "What I would do is go outside and practice golf, and eventually I'd like to learn to be skilled at golf."

There are more than 500 deaf and hard of hearing students in the Dallas ISD. Those between age 16 and 18, like Frank, are able to take part in the Teen Education Support Services program. 

It was started five years ago for teenagers to improve their reading and writing, though tutoring, because of the high rate of high school dropouts. 

Participants are offered all sorts of activities, including golf. 

"Character development, self-esteem and self-confidence has improved, and that corrolates and translates over into the classroom,"  said Angela Johnson Fisher, director of the Deaf Action Center.

Frank spends a lof of time inside the classroom at the Deaf Action Center at Woodrow Wilson High School. 

Laurie Vasallo is the deaf education counselor at Woodrow Wilson High and said,

"Our students learn about community resources and interaction with others in the community," said Laurie Vasallo, the school's deaf education counselor. "It's been a really wonderful, positive experience for them."

E-mail cflanagan@wfaa.com

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