Plano second graders push for hearing-impaired signs around school

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Second graders at Davis Elementary are doing their part to make their school safer for all students.

The young class is working with Plano city leaders to put up signs informing drivers about hearing impaired students on campus.

Davis Elementary serves as a regional day school program for the deaf for most of Collin County. Out of the 400 students at Davis, 60 of them are hearing-impaired. So the second-grade class decided to use an assignment to help their hearing-impaired classmates.

It started with a simple class assignment: write a persuasive letter. They identified a need in their community and came up with the idea to ask city leaders for signs placed around their school warning drivers of deaf students. Soon, that idea became a reality.

Plano Senior Deputy City Manager Mark Israelson came to speak to the class earlier this month and heard about the idea.

“The fact that the kids came together and presented it as a cohesive idea was very impressive,” he said. “And I thought it was a great idea.”

Israelson took it back to city staff, who said they could make it happen.

On Wednesday, Davis second graders got to see their idea in action. They even voted on the sign design and where they thought the signs should go.

“The kids also know the neighborhood really well,” Israelson said. “They know what the traffic patterns are. They travel with their parents, and they walk to school. They know where the signs probably need to go.”

“It's amazing to know that not just this year, but they're gonna carry that forward,” said teacher Deborah Tubbs. “And every time they drive by those signs, they're gonna know we made that happen.”

Plano's traffic engineers will take a look at the students' suggestions about where the signs should go before making the final decision.

There's no official date when the signs will be installed, but city officials expect it to happen by this school year.