Though I hated Jericho Hill School for the Deaf and Blind with a passion, being there did produce a few beneficial results. One was that we were taught to behave ourselves in public. Lessons of politeness, such as saying “please” and “thank you” or not running in the church, were drilled into us until it became second nature. This is why encountering the rudeness of sighted children seemed so shocking to us.From Deliverance From Jericho (Six Years in a Blind School), here is how we felt when we were exposed to unsupervised and undisciplined sighted children.
On most Saturday afternoons, a school employee bussed us to the Dunbar Theatre to watch the matinee. Usually, they showed movies starring the Three Stooges but at other times adventure films were featured.
Since the adults did not trust us with money, our thirty cent allowances were handled by Miss Boyce. She also helped the totally blind boys purchase the treats they desired.
“I can’t believe how loud these sighted kids are. We’d really get it if we acted like that,” Wayne shouted to me over the din as we waited for the movie to begin.
“Yeah, how come they can get away with it and we can’t?” I wondered. “Miss Boyce would crucify us if we acted like them.”
Deliverance from Jericho contains many more vignettes of what life was like in that government-run institution. These range from poignant experiences of homesickness to hilarious incidents of mischief. Click here to read more about this book and to order it.