Frenship ISD Reboots American Sign Language Program

As of August 2018, students at Frenship High School and the Ninth Grade Center now have the opportunity to take American Sign Language. This is the first time in 8 years that Frenship ISD has offered ASL in the “Language Other Than English” course category.

Frenship High School Principal Greg Hernandez is excited about the opportunities that ASL provides for Frenship students. “The interest for the program is there, and we want to provide for our students. We’re so glad to be able to give them a variety of options,” said Hernandez.

Heading up the ASL program is American Sign Language and Academic Decathlon teacher Mallory Thomas. Thomas joins Frenship with 6 years of teaching experience ranging from 2nd to 8th grade.

“This is my first time teaching ASL, and it is awesome and terrifying at the same time. Because there wasn’t any groundwork for the program, I’ve really gotten to make it my own,” said Thomas with a smile.

When asked about her goals for the program, Thomas is focused on academics and inclusion. “Of course I want my students to learn the language. One of my goals is for students to be able to carry on a basic conversation with a deaf person without stumbling over their signs. But more than that, I want my students to understand the deaf culture. The more people that know sign language, the less isolated the deaf community feels.”