FHSR EDUCATION COORDINATOR - ANNA TESS
In recent years the Foundation for Hearing and Speech Resources (FHSR) has heard from families a need for a parent/teacher resource to support their child with hearing loss in educational settings. To answer this need, FHSR has created the Education Coordinator program to support parents, teachers and administrators with technology, individualized education plans, 504 plans, accomodations, modifications, transitions and classroom support through a child’s time in the education system. The Education Coordinator program builds off the online Ages and Stages program, which was developed in conjunction with multiple experts in pediatric hearing loss, by expanding the resources available for parents including the Education Coordinator position.
FHSR welcomes Dr. Anna Tess as its new Educational Coordinator. Prior to joining FHSR, Anna was a school administrator and teacher at a school for children with hearing loss for eight years. She received her Doctorate in Special Education at Illinois State University, Masters in Educational Leadership from American College of Education, and Masters in Deaf Education at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN. Having been born deaf herself, Anna was one of the first generation recipients of cochlear implants, receiving her first implant at the age of 2 and her second at the age of 19.
When asked what has inspired her to take on this new challenge, Dr. Tess stated,
“I have a deep commitment to my profession and the students that have a hearing loss like I do. My goal is to work with the families of children living with hearing loss so the children have every opportunity to achieve educationally, such as the opportunities that were created for me. As a person with hearing loss, I have a true understanding of what it feels like to be discouraged and told “you can’t” because of one’s hearing loss. I want to pay it forward and help kids like myself succeed and become confident in themselves.”
By placing an individual with Anna’s professional and personal experience with hearing loss, FHSR is confident that the role of the Education Coordinator will have a long reaching positive impact on deaf and hard of hearing children’s education opportunities and will be a key resource for parents.
“I have worked in one-on-one settings, large group classrooms, small group classrooms and inclusive classrooms with students of a variety of ages and disabilities. I have established a successful record of helping children learn, both in and outside the classroom setting, and have volunteered with different organizations. I am passionate about supporting students, parents, teachers, and administrators. I want to be a resource that can support parents through the hearing loss journey.” Stated Anna when we asked how she is uniquely qualified for the inaugural position.
FHSR is looking forward to the launch of the Education Coordinator program in January 2024. Dr. Tess’s support will be available throughout Illinois, both in person and remotely. FHSR is committed to this program being free of charge to both families and schools in need of the Education Coordinator services.
Please visit our Education Coordinator Program for additional information to learn more about the program and the services offered.