Deaf boy forbidden from signing his own name

By Melissa Wishart

A hearing-impaired Nebraskan boy has been told by his preschool that he cannot sign his own name, as the hand gestures involved violate their ‘weapons in school’ policy.
Grand Island Public Schools’ policy forbids the use of anything that looks like a weapon. For three year old Hunter Spanjar, the hand gesture describing his name apparently resembles a gun too closely for him to use it.
A local news station, 10 11, reported that Hunter had supposedly been told he had to change the way he signed his name.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) was involving themselves in the case.
The organisation sent the school a letter stating “A parent’s choice of name for his child is one of the most personal aspects of the parent-child relationship and the district cannot step into the middle of that constitutionally protected relationship.”
The school has since released a statement saying “Grand Island Public Schools is not requiring any current student with a hearing impairment to change his or her sign language name.” They could not comment on Hunter’s specific case.
Hunter’s grandmother, Janet Logue, told KGIN “Anybody that I have talked to thinks this is absolutely ridiculous.
“This is not threatening in any way.”
A district spokesman, Jack Sheard, said that district officials were working with the parents on the issue.