For over 60 years, the Institute had a separate Deaf-Blind Department. The original building that opened in 1938 is now where the business office and museum are located. It was a significant program that was very innovative and progressive since its inception.
From 1964-1965, before the development of a vaccine against the disease, a rubella epidemic swept the United States. Of children whose mothers are infected during their first trimester of pregnancy, studies suggest that between 50% and 90% would suffer from Congenital Rubella Syndrome (CRS). During that short period, there were 12.5 million cases of rubella. Twenty thousand children were born with CRS: 11,000 were deaf, 3,500 blind, and 1,800 mentally retarded. It was this epidemic that lead to the Institute building Frampton Hall which severed this population for over 30 years.
As this population grew out of school age, the Institute started our current pre-school program in Frampton Hall. The Readiness Program provides special education services to children ages 3-5. Students who have been identified as a preschooler with a disability and have a recommendation for special education are placed in the program through their local Committee on Preschool Special Education.