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Student Life

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The Austine campus lies on a beautiful 175-acre forested preserve in the heart of Brattleboro, Vermont. Nestled in the peaceful Connecticut River Valley, Brattleboro is known for its vibrant arts scene and bustling small-city downtown. For more than 100 years, the community has welcomed a sizable deaf population, and the close relationship between Austine and the community shows in the active deaf social scene, the warmth of the local townspeople, and the array of specialized professional services in the area.

Outside the classroom, students find a wealth of things to do. We believe that life on our wooded campus is an integral part of the educational experience. Students have access to an on-site Ropes course, a swimming pool, hiking trails, a climbing wall, log cabins and a skating/fishing pond. There are also numerous opportunities to participate in interscholastic and intramural sports, recreational activities, and field trips. Traditions like hiking and a monthly school bonfire inspire confidence in being outdoors. Older students are within easy walking distance of downtown (with parental permission) and pastimes like bowling, indoor ice skating, snowboarding and skiing are within easy reach.

 

Residential Living

The Austine School offers school-year and year-round dormitory living options for students ages 5-22. Dedicated overnight staff who are fluent in ASL provide awake, on-site supervision at all times. Dorm renovations completed in 2010 added new rooms and upgraded common areas. Students live in single or double occupancy rooms and are segregated by age and gender.

Beyond just bedrooms, dorm facilities include numerous supervised activity spaces. Play areas and arts and crafts rooms particularly engage younger students, while a recreation room stocked with games, a snack bar, and wide-screen TV for movie parties is a favorite spot for the teens. The school cafeteria is host to dances, while the outdoor courtyard is the site of summer barbeques and the campus hill is a favorite spot for winters sledding parties. Holidays are celebrated with parties and feasts and many are open to parents and alumni.

An independent living skills dorm is available for older students preparing to transition to adult life. They learn essential skills in budgeting, banking, shopping, cooking, planning and scheduling by actually doing them.

All living and classroom spaces at Austine are wheelchair accessible.

The Department of Student Life

The Department of Student Life offers a unique program, designed to guide and support the personal growth of each student. Students are assigned to residential advisors who facilitate their development into mature, independent young adults. The residential program embraces the SPICE philosophy, focusing on Social, Physical, Intellectual, Communicative and Emotional development. Special assistance is provided for those students who require additional and more intensive training in acquiring independent living skills.

The Department of Student Life offers enrolled students three options for participation in student life.

  1. School Week Residency - Students who live too far away for daily transportation to/from campus live in on-campus dormitories, from Monday afternoon until Friday morning, throughout the school year.
  2. Daily Activity-Based - Students who are not dormitory residents are invited participate in the after school activities provided by the Department of Student Life.
  3. Partial Overnight Residency - Students who are involved in interscholastic and/or extra-curricular activities that are held in the evening are offered access to an on-campus dormitory room.

The Coordinator of Student Life coordinates with contracted transportation providers who transport students to and from school each week.

  • Parent Newsletter
  • Sports & Other Activities
  • Dormitory Living