THE BRIGHT SCHOOLThe Bright School opened in a small house in Uptown New Orleans in 1959. At that time it was called the Cottage School. The deaf and hard of hearing children received many of the same services they receive today including speech therapy, language lessons and auditory training. In the 1970’s the school moved to Walmsley Avenue in the Broadmoor area and was renamed the Bright School in memory of its founders.
As technology advanced and children were being identified with hearing loss at younger ages the school began to focus on early intervention; working with children from birth to three years old. By 2005 the school was providing services in our school as well as in homes and child care centers.
Hurricane Katrina became part of the school’s history as it flooded our building and scattered our families. Within five months Bright was again working with children and their families and making plans to reopen with an innovative program designed to meet the needs of our population. The two most apparent needs were the development and support of children with cochlear implants and providing quality child care with trained staff.
Bright now is helping the community with three programs. First is Language Says It All, a collaborative with another United Way Agency, the New Orleans Speech and Hearing Center and a local child care facility. Next is our individualized lessons through Louisiana Early Steps. Our third program is called ITS for infant and toddler signing.