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Frequently Asked Questions


The MSD Advantage is...
The MSD Advantage offers students the opportunity to complete their educations as literate young adults—confident in their abilities, competent in the deaf and hearing communities, and poised to succeed in their personal and professional lives.

The MSD Advantatage is why a MSD education supports each child’s academic and psychosocial development.
How will my child benefit from The MSD Advantage?
Your child will be a direct participant in the free public school experience.
Your child will have full and clear access to knowledge, information, social interaction, and incidental learning.
Your child will benefit from an excellent curriculum provided in conjunction with an individualized, comprehensive program that supports every child in reaching their highest level of competency.
Which campus will my child attend?
Campus placement depends on where your family lives and the type of curriculum your child needs. Pre-K through grade 8 students might attend either campus, while all high school students attend the Frederick campus.
Is my child eligible for an MSD Education?
Yes, if your child is a deaf or hard of hearing; infant, toddler, or child or youth up to age 21.
School-age youth attend elementary, middle, and high school. MSD’s family education and early childhood department serves children from birth to age 5 and their families statewide.
Will my child learn to read?

Literacy is MSD’s goal for every student, and we are getting results!


What if my child has an additional disability?
Your child might benefit from MSD’s exceptional life based education and enhanced service program in our special needs curriculum.
Will my child receive speech and auditory training at MSD?
The Individualized Education Plan (IEP) team can meet and discuss the communication needs of your child.  Both campuses employ a variety of professionals (speech-language pathologists, audiologists and educators of the deaf).
My child has a cochlear implant. Is it possible that MSD is the right school for my child?
MSD welcomes all children, including those with hearing aids, cochlear implants and those with varying levels of hearing.  The Individualized Education Plan (IEP) team can discuss the language of instruction that best meets your child’s educational needs within the classroom.
In order to address the needs of students who are auditory learners at MSD, the Board of Trustees approved the following: “For certain classes, Spoken English will be sued as the language of instruction.  American Sign Language will be utilized in the class for support and clarification” (MSD Parent & Student Handbook).  This approval has led to three possible options for classroom instruction:
  1. ASL as the language of instruction, with written English taught as a second language.
  2. ASL as the language of instruction with spoken English support where spoken English is provided in either small group or in 1-on-1 situations within the classroom.
  3. Spoken English Language Classroom where spoken English is the language of instruction, and ASL is utilized to clarify or enhance communication.
Our new baby was born deaf. Can MSD help?
Absolutely! MSD is home to a successful program dedicated to empowering parents in making informed decisions about the educational, communication, language, and social experiences for their deaf or hard of hearing child.
How do I apply for my child’s admission to MSD?
Interested parents/guardians should contact the MSD Admissions office at:

Frederick Campus
Supervisor of Admissions - Theresa A. Napoli
Email - theresa.napoli@msd.edu
Secretary - Katie Baker
Phone - (301) 360-2030 (V/TTY)
Email - bakerka@msd.edu

Columbia Campus
Director of Student Support Services-Jennifer Mertes
Email - jennifer.mertes@msd.edu
Secretary - Ms. Iantha Dean

Phone - (410) 480-4514 (V/TTY)
Email - iantha.dean@msd.edu

Complete information on admissions and related topics is located at http://www.msd.edu/admissions.
How will my child get to school?
Your local school system will provide bus transportation to MSD from a place local to your home on a daily or weekly basis. Parents provide daily transportation for students who participate in after school programs or extracurricular activities.
What if my child is a high achiever?
Eligible students can take middle and high school honors classes. College-bound high school students take honors and advanced placement courses.
Will my child get a public school education at MSD?
Yes. An MSD Education is Maryland’s Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) — the same education offered at public schools throughout Maryland — plus the extraordinary support of The MSD Advantage that empowers each student to reach their highest level of competency.
Are sign language classes available?
Classes are provided for parents of our children and well as classes and support for our students who are learning sign language.  An American Sign Language Specialist (ASL) is on each campus for both student and teacher support.
How do I get a Teacher Certification?
This information can be found within the Employment section, on the Teacher Certification page.
Can I volunteer or do an internship at MSD?
Yes, you will need to fill out the Internship/Volunteer form in our employment section.