Camp Loud And Clear: July 26-28, 2019

Camp Loud And Clear

Thank you for your interest in Camp Loud and Clear which will be held July 26 – 28, 2019 at the Holiday Lake 4-H Educational Center in Appomattox County, Virginia (directions may be found at  Camp Loud and Clear is a combined effort of Virginia Cooperative Extension, Holiday Lake 4-H Educational Center, Longwood University, and a team of dedicated volunteers and professionals. Camp Loud and Clear is an overnight summer camp for children and youth whose primary disability is that he/she is deaf or hard of hearing.  Activities include swimming, archery, nature studies, hiking, and more set in the rolling terrain of Central Virginia.

           Participants may be verbal or sign to communicate.  Participants ages 9 to 13 (as of September 30, 2019) years old are considered campers and those ages 14 to 18 (as of September 30, 2019) are counselors-in-training (CITs).  CITs participate in all activities and are given minor leadership roles. CITs will receive training on their responsibilities the first day of camp. Cost of the camp is $115 for campers, $85 for CITs.

Click to learn more and download the application!

2019 Legislative Summary as of 2/23/2019

(1) HB 2026 Newborn screening; congenital cytomegalovirus. 

Newborn screening; congenital cytomegalovirus. Directs the Board of Health to amend regulations governing newborn screening to include screening for congenital cytomegalovirus in newborns who fail the newborn hearing screen.

State of HB 2026 =  Still in progress, but just passed House with 100% YES

(2)  HB 2137 Persons who are deaf or hard of hearing; replaces certain terminology.

Persons who are deaf or hard of hearing; terminology. Replaces the term "hearing impaired" and its variations with "deaf or hard of hearing" and "hearing loss" throughout the Code of Virginia. The bill also renames the Virginia Hearing Impairment Identification and Monitoring System as the Virginia Hearing Loss Identification and Monitoring System.

 State of HB 2137 = Passed 100% YES in both House and Senate

(3) HB 2601 Health insurance; coverage for hearing aids for minors.

Health insurance; coverage for hearing aids for minors. Requires health insurers, corporations providing health care coverage subscription contracts, and health maintenance organizations to provide coverage for the billed charges of one hearing aid per hearing impaired ear not to exceed $3,000 per hearing aid for minors. The measure requires the coverage to provide the replacement for one hearing aid per hearing impaired ear every 48 months. The measure exempts the requirement for coverage if (i) the contract, policy, or plan is offered by any employer with 10 or fewer employees; (ii) an actuary certifies that providing the coverage will result in an increase in premiums of one percent or more; or (iii) the contract, policy, or plan is offered on a health benefit exchange and the benefits provided exceed the essential health benefits required under § 1302(b) of the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The measure applies to policies, contracts, and plans delivered, issued for delivery, or renewed on or after January 1, 2020.HB 2601 Health insurance; coverage for hearing aids for minors.

State of  HB 2601 = Tabled in Commerce And Labor (Where bills requiring insurance mandates go to be reviewed)

(4) SB 1741 Language development for children who are deaf or hard of hearing; assessment resources for parents.

Language development for children who are deaf or hard of hearing; assessment resources for parents and educators; advisory committee; report. Requires the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, in coordination with the Department of Education and the Department for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing, to (i) select, with input from an advisory committee that the bill establishes, language development milestones and include such milestones in a resource for use by parents of a child from birth to age five who is identified as deaf or hard of hearing to monitor and track their child's expressive and receptive language acquisition and developmental stages toward English literacy; (ii) disseminate such resource to such parents; (iii) select existing tools or assessments for educators for use in assessing the language and literacy development of children from birth to age five who are deaf or hard of hearing; (iv) disseminate such tools or assessments to local educational agencies and provide materials and training on their use; and (v) annually produce a report that compares the language and literacy development of children from birth to age five who are deaf or hard of hearing with the language and literacy development of their peers who are not deaf or hard of hearing and make such report available to the public on its website.

State of SB 1741 = Senate Health and Education Committee referred to Joint Health Commission, but has not been submitted for review yet. 

Care Project Retreat: May 3-5, 2019

TCP Virginia Family Retreat
Roslyn Retreat Center, Richmond, VA 
May 3-5, 2019

This retreat is for families with children ages 0-3. 

Please click here for a copy of the Family Retreat Application in Word format.

Please click here for a copy of the Family Retreat Application in PDF format.  

Please return your completed application to or mail to The CARE Project 716 Staley Ct, Raleigh, NC 27609

Application Deadline is March 1, 2019

Virginia Blue Ridge Region Early Hearing Detection Intervention Meeting: April 16, 2019


Check out the links to see if your home address falls into the “Blue Ridge” Region.

And please consider attending the meeting below…

TO: Parents of Infants and Young Children who are Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing and Professionals Who Support, Treat and Educate Children Who Are Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing (0-3 years)

In September 2017, the Virginia Early Hearing Detection and Intervention (VA EHDI) Program launched the first regional EHDI Learning Community in Northern Virginia, which included a group of enthusiastic parents and professionals who support, treat and educate children who are deaf and hard-of-hearing. This group had one main objective: to connect individuals, organizations, and systems and work across boundaries in pursuit of a shared goal – the best possible outcomes for young children with hearing loss. Learning communities have also since been established in Central and Southwest Virginia and the Roanoke region.


We are excited to share that the Blue Ridge Region

 EHDI Learning Community group will be launched in April 2019.


In these learning communities, everyone is both teacher and learner. Members contribute their expertise and are invited to share with others. The direction and interests of each community will be based on inquiry and reflection.

You can help us establish the Virginia EHDI Learning Community in your area!

 If you live or work in or near the Blue Ridge region, there are three ways that you can help us:

  1. Complete the online needs assessment survey by April 1, which will help us identify needs and direct efforts in designing methods to meet those needs.

  1. Mark Your Calendar: Register for the Blue Ridge Learning Community kickoff meeting, which is scheduled for Tuesday, April 16 at the Virginia School for the Deaf and Blind (VSDB): Seating is very limited, so register early.

  1. Forward this opportunity to other parents and professionals you know who support, treat and educate children ages 0-3 years and encourage them to complete the survey and attend the kickoff event. (I have attached a Word and JPG copy of the announcement letter for printing and/or posting online.) 

Feel free to contact me with questions:  We look forward to working with you on this exciting project!

BRLC Parent and Prof Letter 2.14.19.jpg

Continuity of Caring Meeting in Richmond

On April 9, 2018, several of the AG Bell VA Chapter members attended a meeting in Richmond, VA, that focused on the continued education around hearing loss. Put on by the Center for Family Involvement, the day was broken in to two sections:

  1. Dr. Anita Jeyamukar, an otolaryngologist, discussed Newborn Hearing Screening and Early Identification of hearing loss. 
  2. Joni Alberg, PhD, who does public policy consulting for AG Bell, presented research around the "Social Development and Children Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing"

The audience was a mix of professional educators, audiologists, and parents of deaf and hearing impaired children from all around the state. 

There was good research shared and conversations had around challenges. The VA Chapter of AG Bell is looking forward to contributing ideas and recommendations for all parties involved with deaf and hard of hearing children. 

Visual Phonics Training by Allied Instructional Services

Join Cheryl Sale of Allied Instructional Services in Ashland, VA to receive training in Visual Phonics, See the Sounds.

What is Visual Phonics?

Visual Phonics puts into perspective not only the written form of language but the real power of language, which is sound.

It opens a door for those who do not have access to all of the learning modes; it gives them access to something that they have not had before, and it is a light going on that permits them to read, to think, to feel to learn language, and to communicate as we all communicate.

It is a great joy to us to know that since 1982 many hundreds of thousands of children and adults have used See the Sound - Visual Phonics to improve their reading, spelling and communication skills.

Click here to learn more about the training and register

There must be a way for all of us who are capable of thought to learn to the best of
our abilities and be taught in the way that is best for us.
— Millie Snow, 1982

2018 for AG Bell's Virginia Chapter

The Virginia Chapter of AGBell is very excited about the upcoming year and all of its possibilities! We have a fantastic and energetic team of families of children with hearing loss, adults with hearing loss, and professionals working to provide Virginia with both social and educational opportunities, as well as avenues for advocacy that will help all children with hearing loss.

BEST YET...we are currently close to 140 members statewide!!! This is amazing and we thank each and everyone of you for your support and belief in advancing Listening and Spoken Language for Children with Hearing Loss.

It is our hope that our membership will participate in these planned activities, as well as offer ideas of their own. This is YOUR organization and it is important that we meet the needs of our member. You can feel free to contact any of us at any time with suggestions, comments, or questions.

Did you know???

1) The national organization of the Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing offers FREE MEMBERSHIP to all Non-Professionals! This includes parents and other family members, as well as friends and other supporters. Your national membership automatically makes you a member of your state organization. JOIN TODAY!

2) You can find us on FACEBOOK under "Virginia Chapter of AGBell" or at

Upcoming Events

  • Continuity of Care Program - April 8, 2018
  • Flying Squirrels Game - April 28, 2018
  • Regional Members Picnics around VA - June 2018 (Dates and locations coming soon!)
  • VA Chapter Meet and Greet at National AG Bell Convention in Scottsdale, Arizona - June 29, 2018
  • Professional Meet + Greet for Certified AVT / AVEd and potential AVT/ AVEd Social - Locations include: Richmond at the Midlothian Capital Ale House and Tidewater (location TBD)
  • Kids and Teens event at Jumpology - August 7, 2018