Community Newsletter

May 8, 2020

Peter Bailey, Head of School
Happy Birthday PSD - April 20, 2020
All PSD other campus community events are canceled. Please stay tuned to our website and social media outlets for updated information.
#WhyITeachDeafChildren #TeacherAppreciationWeek
May 4 kicks off the annual Teacher Appreciation Week. This year's celebration is much different than in the past as we teach during the COVID-19 pandemic. We want to celebrate all that we love about deaf education this week by reigniting the hashtag #WhyITeachDeafChildren. Please share this graphic (right) on social media and ask your followers to share why they love teaching deaf children, especially now. Be sure to also include #TeacherAppreciationWeek in your messages this week.
COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance   This program aims to help people who have lost income because of COVID-19 to pay their rent.

It makes payments directly to landlords.

The City will begin accepting applications on Tuesday, May 12, 2020 at 10 a.m. The deadline to apply is Saturday, May 16, 2020 at 5 p.m.

To be eligible:
  • You must rent an apartment or house in Philadelphia
  • You must have a valid and current written lease signed by your landlord
  • You must have lost income because of COVID-19
  • You must also meet income guidelines
You do NOT have to have been diagnosed with COVID-19 to be eligible.

Messages from the Pennsylvania Society for the Advancement of the Deaf
Information videos about COVID-19/ Coronavirus from PSAD
Disability Rights Survey
Your Opinion is Invitied
On, Monday, April 20, 2020, Disability Rights of Pennsylvania (DRP) started its 45-day public comment period for our fiscal year 2021 annual program goals and objectives. DRP invites  public feedback  on the issues that matter most to individuals with disabilities, along with their families and organizations supporting them. June 4, 2020, will be the final day to offer public comments. DRP is hosting 1 live webinar to accept public comment. Keep up to date on  our page  and social media for more information on how to participate.
To help you answer the census, the U.S. Census Bureau provides translated web pages and guides 59 non-English languages, including American Sign Language, as well as guides in braille and large print.
Request Your Mail-in Ballot!
for June 2nd Elections in Pennsylvania
at Pennsylvanians can exercise their right to vote by requesting a mail-in ballot.
The Salvation Army Kroc Center of Philadelphia (4200 Wissahickon Ave) serves as an Emergency Disaster Services Distribution Center. They are providing drive-through meal distributions every Monday, Wednesday & Friday at 4PM while supplies last. No appointment necessary. Family food boxes are available by appointment Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday. Call 215-558-1500 to learn more. 

El Centro Kroc del Ejército de Salvación de Filadelfia (4200 Wissahickon Ave) sirve como Centro de Distribución de Servicios de Emergencia para Desastres. Proporcionan distribuciones de comida todos los lunes, miércoles y viernes a las 4PM hasta que los alimentos se terminen agotar. No se necesita cita. Las cajas familiares de alimentos están disponibles con cita los martes, miércoles y jueves. Llame al 215-558-1500 para obtener más información.  
Connect with Tech
Make a difference today!
During this time of social distancing, many Pennsylvanians can’t see or communicate with familiar people, friends, and family. We want to help people be able to handle anxiety and fear at this time. CLICK HERE to request technology OR donate technology .
PA Office for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing
COVID-19 Communication Card
We have created a helpful Communications card in the event that you or someone you love needs health care assistance related to COVID-19. You can access the   PDF here .  

(multiple ASL videos)

PA Unemployment
For the current time, the Videophone is staffed with a PA state registered interpreter on Wednesdays and Fridays from 8-4. There is a very high volume of calls right now, not just the video phone calls. We ask for patience as everyone works together to navigate these challenging times. ODHH is here is assist with VP call concerns and guidance.  Click here for an ASL captioned video UC.

Also a reminder that interpreters are independent contractors and are affected by COVID-19. In this unprecedented time, independent contractors will be eligible for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance .  Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) provides emergency unemployment assistance to workers who are left out of regular state UI or who have exhausted their state UI benefits. Up to 39 weeks of PUA are available to workers who are immediately eligible to receive PUA. The program will expire on December 31, 2020, unless otherwise extended.

NEW! Call Center Guide when handling calls from individuals with hearing loss.

Melissa A. Hawkins   MS, MHR  | Director
PA Department of Labor & Industry | Office for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing
1521 North 6th Street | Harrisburg, PA 17102
Phone & TTY: 800-233-3008 (PA only) | Phone & TTY: 717.783.4912
Fax: 717.783.4913,
PA Coalition Against Domestic Violence

Philadelphia Corporation for Aging

NEW! Beginning in May , Liberty Resources, Caring for Friends, and Share Food Program are offering free, weekly food delivery (contact-free) to Philadelphians who are facing food insecurity and cannot leave their homes due to a disability. To request to join this program, call or text (215) 709-9619, email , or fill out this online form . A program representative will call back to discuss the food delivery plan.

DIY Face Covering (Mask) Links
Dr. Jerome Adams, U.S. Surgeon General demonstrates how to make a face mask covering in 45 seconds. (captioned) See or for DIY face mask patterns and instructions.

(Youtube video – no sound)

(includes videos in ASL on COVID-19 and downloadable/printable Communication Card in English and in Spanish to be used in NJ healthcare facilities)

Kids Stories Collection on Deaf Professional Arts Network - The Sign Language Channel (website and app offering signed and closed captioned news and entertainment videos)
Symptoms of COVID 19 ASL video

10 Things you can do to manage COVID 19 at home ASL Video
The Department of Human Services (DHS)has launched a statewide Support & Referral Helpline staffed by skilled and compassionate staff who will be available 24/7 to assist Pennsylvanians struggling with anxiety and other challenging emotions due to the COVID-19 emergency. The toll-free, round-the-clock support line 1-855-284-2494 is officially operational. For TTY, dial 724-631-5600.

Other resources remain available to Pennsylvanians in need of support, including:
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
  • Nacional de Prevención del Suicidio: 1-888-628-9454
  • Crisis Text Line: Text “PA” to 741-741
  • Veteran Crisis Line: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
  • Disaster Distress Helpline: 1-800-985-5990
  • Get Help Now Hotline (for substance use disorders): 1-800-662-4357
  • Pennsylvania Sexual Assault Helpline – 1-888-772-7227
  • National Domestic Violence Helpline – 1-800-799-7233


American Society for Deaf Children
ASDC FREE MyASL Tech Membership for kids!


COVID 19 Resources for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Families


City Expands Free Food Access to All Philadelphians
Other Free Food Resources



The Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management (PhilaOEM) has a text alert system all about COVID-19. Text COVIDPHL to 888-777 to receive updates to your phone. Message and data rates may apply.




(in 8 languages)

Over 200 ASL stories, eBooks, and other ASL educational resources for parents and children
(last updated March 20, 2020)

This is an ongoing compilation of free resources available online, and this document will be continually updated with new links. New resources will be added to the TOP of the appropriate category for easy visibility. (Resources that cost money will be listed in their own category) For any questions or concerns regarding this document, contact CLICK HERE

Clear-Masks for Deaf, Hard of Hearing
and DeafBlind
Masks can be requested at    
More information at:

Due to the stay-at-home order, all of our Summer 2020 ASL classes and private tutoring sessions are being offered online via Zoom. Access to a laptop or desktop computer is required to sign up for online sessions.
Cap4Kids Updates

Helpline and info for questions related to COVID-19.

As the news of the coronavirus spreads, so too are fears and worries about protecting yourself and your loved ones. We have a responsibility to prevent the spread of this virus. We also need to prevent the spread of misinformation, and want to be careful about making sure that the most accurate and most recent information is shared.
60 Days of free Internet Essentials offer extended to June 30!
During this difficult time when schools and workplaces are closed due to the Coronavirus, access to the internet has never been more important. Here is some important news about Internet Essentials to help families deal with this crisis. Please  click here to apply.
Catholic Deaf Philly
Our Daily Hope – Vlog Reflection

Sr. Kathleen Schipani, IHM
Director, Office for Persons with Disabilities & Deaf Apostolate
Archdiocese of Philadelphia
222 N. 17 th  Street, Philadelphia PA 19103
215.587.3913 phone /267.507.1215 video phone

Information for families regarding free internet and data options. Here are some links to share:

Consider a gift today to help PSD continue the important work we do for our Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing students.

United Way #737
Combined Federal Campaign #87714
or click below.

We thank you for your support!

Please forward comments and announcements for posting considerations to:
Karen Leslie-Henry, Community Relations Coordinator:
Content Disclaimer
The information contained in the e-newsletter is for general information purposes only. The information is provided by Pennsylvania School for the Deaf and while we endeavor to keep the information up to date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the newsletter or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained on the e-newsletter for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk. In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of data or profits arising out of, or in connection with, the use of this e-newsletter. Through this e-newsletter you are able to link to other websites that are not under the control of PSD. We have no control over the nature, content and availability of those sites. The inclusion of any links does not necessarily imply a recommendation or endorse the views expressed within them.