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A non-profit organization 
								  created to educate the public about the hearing issues, needs and 
								  limitations specific to ALL children in EVERY classroom setting 
								  and to advocate the integration of sound enhancement technology 
								  to compensate for those auditory learning problems and increase 
								  opportunity for successful academic achievement.

Welcome to The Institute for Enhanced Classroom Hearing!

Unfortunately, ECH has been forced to cease offering most services due to lack of funding. We are keeping this website online to benefit the public as long as funding enables us to do so. Donations are no longer tax deductible, but any amount you can give will enable us keep this important information accessible to the public.

Please consider a donation of any size if you find the information available on this website useful. Click the Donate button for details.

Thanks to a generous donation from a single person (Thank you Lorna!!), we are able to keep this website up for several more years. It still takes time and money to update content and features to keep pace with changing browsers. You may notice functionality and appearance of this site are slightly dated. We currently place a funding priority on keeping the site operational over function and appearance. Any additional donations we receive could enable us to do both. Any amount is greatly appreciated!

Do YOU know...

  • That normal hearing children can miss as much as 1/3 of what their teacher says due to poor classroom acoustics.
  • One in five adolescents suffer some sort of hearing impairment, a 31% increase in hearing loss among those between 12 and 19 years of age from a decade earlier (JAMA, 2010).
  • A child's hearing abilities are not fully developed until age 15. Children cannot hear and neurologically process what they hear the same as an adult. (Crandell 1995; Flexer 2002)
  • Up to 43% of primary level students fail a minimal 15 dB hearing screening on any given day, in part due to the 14.9% (or approximately 8 million) school-aged children that have a permanent hearing loss and the 10-15% of children that have a temporary hearing loss from middle ear infections. (MARRS-U.S. Dept. of Education Study; American Medical Association )
  • The teacher’s voice drops 6 decibels for every doubling of distance meaning that children seated in the middle to back rows have significantly greater difficulty attending to the teacher’s verbal instruction.
  • For the 2007-2009 period, an annual average of 9% of children aged 5-17 years had ever been diagnosed with ADHD an increase from 6.9% in 1998-2000 (NCHS, 2011). For boys, the ADHD prevalence increased from 9.9% in 1998-2000 to 12.3% in 2007-2009 (NCHS, 2011).
  • In 1996, the United Nations issued a report over the concern that 10-12% of school-aged boys in the United States were being prescribed the drug Ritalin. During the 1990s there was a 700% increase in the use of psychostimulants in the United States. Effectively, the U.S. was consuming over 90% of 8.5 tons of Ritalin produced world-wide each year.

This short 3 minute CBS Evening News segment provides an excellent introduction to the problems and a cost-effective solution. Visit our Media page for more video clips and news stories as well as our Research pages for supporting information. Videos are also available in QuickTime format if you are unable to play Windows Media files.

The National PTA has voted to adopt a Classroom Auditory Learning Issues resolution at their 2007 Annual Convention in St. Louis, Missouri.

Read the final resolution here.
The national awareness campaign began with an article in Our Children Magazine.

Explore this website to learn more about these important auditory learning issues (and more) that affect EVERY child, EVERY day, in EVERY classroom. Research proves that these issues have a direct impact on successful academic achievement.

Need help describing this issue to others?
Download our convenient tri-fold brochure which provides a comprehensive overview of the problems and the classroom sound enhancement solution in a concise single page format. You can use this as a handout to help describe this important issue to others and reinforce your points. Get the brochure here.