California School for the Deaf


Students at California School for the Deaf are engaged in a positive environment where ASL and English are valued, cultures are embraced, learning is relevant, and self-worth is uplifted. In collaboration with families and school communities, Southern California students prepare for college and careers through academic rigor, innovative technology, and extra-curricular opportunities.


What's Happening at CSDR

All Events Subject to Change

Capture your memories in this Year's California School for the Deaf, Riverside yearbook!

Sample yearbook page.
  • Add photos & memories to your 2 free custom pages:
  • Add photos from your computer, Facebook & Flickr.
  • Add memories & photos from throughout the year. Share them with your classmates to include in their personal pages.
  • Send and receive Bling and signatures. A great way to share expressions of friendship!

To purchase & customize your yearbook:

Must be parent or student 13 years or older.

Go to

Enter our school's passcode:


Yearbook price: $80.00

Support CSDR!

Buy a Brick

To help fund student programs at CSDR, we are thrilled to announce the sale of engraved bricks to commemorate the students and families of CSDR. The bricks will be permanently set onto the wall of the Social Hall for all to see. This is a great way for students, staff and faculty members to be remembered long after they’ve graduated, retired or moved on to the next chapter of their lives. For those just starting CSDR, think of the many years to come that you can spend looking at their engraved brick.

More Information on "Buy a Brick" »

Volunteer at CSDR

‘Vol-un-teer’, n. [Fr. voluntaire]

1. A person who enters or offers to enter into any service of his own free will without compensation.

2. A person who freely gives of his talents to enrich the lives of others.

3. A person whose love of mankind stretches beyond the need for compensation

CSDR has a number of volunteers placed in classrooms and offices throughout the campus. We LOVE our volunteers and make every effort to place volunteers in the areas requested.

Come and Volunteer

Your donation to CSDR will make a difference in the lives of our Deaf students as well as future generations. Why not invest now and show you care about Deaf education.

Funds will be used for student incentives, educational activities, and other necessities to help CSDR thrive. Contributors will receive a thank you letter with documentation for tax purposes, and a hard copy subscription of the PAWSitive Reflections newsletter with your name printed in the next issue.

Thank you for thinking of our students and our school!


Gingerbread Play Cast

Early Childhood Education

ECE provides a safe and warm environment that supports and promotes an enthusiasm for active learning. ECE is also a critical step for successful learning for youngsters from Parent Infant Program (PIP) to Kindergarten.

More about ECE »

Students in Classroom


Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “The secret of education lies in respecting the pupil.” At the Elementary Department of CSDR we could not agree more! We believe it is our responsibility as educators to encourage students to reach their personal best and to develop a lifelong love of learning.

More about Elementary »

Middle School Students

Middle School

The CSDR Middle School Program offers a variety of curricular programs designed to meet the educational needs of all students with a Fast-paced Academic Curriculum, an Academic Curriculum, and a Foundations to Academics Curriculum.

More about Middle School »

High School Students

High School

Our theme is “LEARNING COMES FIRST,” which supports our philosophy that we experience all kinds of learning on a daily basis, whether the learning occurs within the classroom environment or outside in the real world. Learning is not limited to students sitting at their desks, listening to teachers teach.

More about High School »

CTE Students in Competition

Career Technology Education

The Career and Technology Education (CTE) Department has established programs which prepare students for life after high school. The department’s goal is to provide students with the opportunity to develop skills, which will help them become independent and successful members of their community.

More about CTE »

Special Needs Kids in Bowling Game

Special Needs

The Special Needs School offers an alternate curriculum program which follows the California Alternate Performance Assessment standards (CAPA). Special Needs programming is designed to develop students’ independent application of concepts. This is accomplished through many hands-on activities at CSDR and in the community.

More about Special Needs »

Character Counts Logo

CHARACTER COUNTS! strengthens students through character education. A person of character is a good person, someone to look up to and admire, who knows the difference between right and wrong and always tries to do what is right. A person with character sets a good example for everyone and makes the world a better place while living according to the “Six Pillars of Character”: TRUSTWORTHINESS, RESPECT, RESPONSBILITY, FAIRNESS, CARING and CITIZENSHIP.

More about Character Counts! »

Winners of Math Olympiad


CSDR embraces the philosophy that positive academic, intellectual, social-emotional, and physical development is the goal for every Deaf and hard-of-hearing child, and that the responsibility for the achievement of this goal is shared by the student, the family, and the school.

More about School Purpose »

ASL Program


CSDR has developed a comprehensive formal ASL curriculum specially designed to correlate with common core English-Language Arts standards and objectives for each grade level. The aim is to use ASL as a medium of instruction that focuses on deepening students’ conceptual foundation.

More about the ASL Program »

Middle School Classroom


CSDR embraces the philosophy that positive academic, intellectual, social-emotional, and physical development is the goal for every Deaf and hard-of-hearing child, and that the responsibility for the achievement of this goal is shared by the student, the family, and the school.

More about Academic Standards »

Student Listening


What is sound? How do sound waves travel? What do different noises sound like? For many of our Deaf students, sound is an abstract concept that has been difficult to understand, until now. With the installation of the “Multisensory Sound Lab”, a new understanding and experience of sound is possible. In the lab, sound is not just perceived through your ears, but through your whole body.

More about Auditory and Speech Support »

California Deaf Education Resource Center


The California Department of Education, along with the California Schools for the Deaf, has recognized that one of its most important goals is to ensure a quality education for all Deaf and hard-of-hearing children and adolescents. Together, they promote the ideal that the more consistently deaf children in California receive resources and services, the more these children can benefit from a quality education. In the fall of 2013 the California Deaf Education Resource Center – South (CDERC-South) was established under the California Department of Education. Housed at the School for the Deaf in Riverside, the goal of the CDERC-South is to act as a clearinghouse of resources for Southern California for those serving Deaf and hard-of-hearing children and adolescents. The center, as defined in EC 59002.5, functions to “disseminate special curriculum, media teaching methods, instructional materials adapted for deaf individuals, achievement tests and other assessment methods useful to the instruction of deaf individuals.” In accordance with California Education Codes, the CDERC aims to provide support to all educators, professionals and caregivers who work with deaf children. These services will include training and guidance on early intervention, parent education, curricula and assessment, and community education, as well as assistance to Local Education Agencies. Trainings have been developed and offered at various locations throughout Southern California, as well as through web-based videos, and live video-conferencing to meet the needs of all programs and logistical constraints.

Towards this goal, CDERC-South has the following programming and trainings in place:

  • DeafTEC: DeafTEC is a grant from the National Science Foundation with the primary purpose of employing more DEAF individuals into technology/STEM careers. In addition, there are training materials and workshops targeted for DEAF teachers on universal design and writing in the disciplines
  • Early Start Workshop Series: Focus on techniques for parents and professionals that work with the Deaf/ hard-of-hearing and strategies to develop language skills. Instruction will include presentation, demonstration, videos, guest speakers, and hands-on opportunities. Spanish and ASL interpreters will be provided.
  • CDERC-Assessment Services: A Deaf or hard-of-hearing student may be referred, as appropriate, for psychological assessment and recommendations.
  • Request a Workshop / Consultation: CDERC has a network of professionals – Psychologists, Teacher Specialists, Audiologists, Occupational Therapists – who can provide workshops or consultation.

For more information, check out our website at

Student Life Program

Students who live more than 60 minutes away from campus qualify to stay overnight at campus during the week as residential students. Students go home in the early afternoon on Friday on the school bus, and return back on Sunday evenings after dinnertime. Residential life staff provides supervision, counseling, recreation activities, homework assistance, as well as after-school activities that are also available to non-residential students (day students). In addition, residential life staff supervises the students in the morning before school, during all mealtimes, in the evenings with some also serving as sports coaches, and during nighttime with separately assigned night attendants.

The residential program reflects and reinforces the campus-wide standards for staff use of ASL and focus on open communication and incidental learning. All residential life counselors are required to be fluent in ASL. Since CSDR is a second home to many students, the cottage environment itself is made communicatively accessible to the students by the provision of computers, video phones, captioned TVs, all in an environment of open space within everyone’s visibility, and many opportunities for interaction with peers and local community members through field trips and sports programs. Group activities and events benefit the students in both incidental and formal learning.

After school activities are also a strong component of the Student Life Program. Parents of day students are strongly encouraged to allow their children to participate with the residential students in these activities. Residential staff members excel in their creativity and scheduling of student activities. After-school activities, workshops, and other features of the residential program include:

  • Extracurricular programs
  • Recreational programs
  • Educational programs
  • Experiential activities
  • Outdoor programs
  • Social events
  • Volunteer programs
  • Study hour
  • Leadership projects/programs
  • Off-campus privileges
  • Interscholastic sports program
  • Work experience
  • Special Olympics
  • Hiking
    • Bowling
    • Crafts
    • Video games
    • Character building activities
    • Shopping
    • Character Counts! Program for character development
    • Peak Program for social skill development
    • Dormitory Council for self-governance
    • Computers for educational, recreational, and communication purposes
    • Video Phones for communication with family members and friends
    More About Cottages/Student Life

    Parents and Staff Working Together (PSWT)

    The Parents and Staff Working Together organization focuses on fundraising and academic enrichment activities for students, as well as teacher appreciation events. Parents and staff come together and work on a casual basis for the benefit of all students. Interpreters are provided at all monthly PSWT meetings.

    Community Advisory Committee (CAC) CAC is the eyes of CSDR and we are all “ears”!

    CAC logo

    The Community Advisory Committee includes 51% or more parent representatives, as well as the president of PSWT, who meet on a monthly basis to provide feedback to the Superintendent on various school-related topics. The staff members serving on the CAC include teacher representatives from each department, with a Family Education coordinator and an Outreach staff. Community representatives may include CSDR alumni, the Center on Deafness-Inland Empire (CODIE), the Riverside/Southern California chapter of the California Association of the Deaf, Deaf Women United of Southern California, and/or Deaf-owned businesses. Parent and community involvement is encouraged for addressing important issues and advice with the Superintendent. With CAC, the school hosts Open Forums for parents and community. CAC examines how CSDR programs and services affect all students, and strives for a positive educational environment. Interpreters are provided at all major events, and at the monthly meetings upon request.

    Alumni Organizations

    CSDR Alumni Association logo
    CSDR Books

    The CSDR Alumni Association assists with CSDR awareness through social media sites and offers college scholarships for students. To fundraise for the student scholarships, CSDRAA hosts a Car Show and Bazaar at CSDR, sports competitions with alumni playing versus the current students, and other fundraiser events for the community. CSDRAA meets on a quarterly basis, and facilitates student class and anniversary reunions for CSDR alumni. The organization worked together with the Laurent Clerc Center to create a 424-page CSDR History Book, authored by Kevin Struxness ’78, on CSDR’s first 50 years. The book can be purchased at:

    Some staff members and parents also serve on the Gallaudet University Alumni Association of Riverside (GUAA), with scholarships for students who have been accepted into the university. GUAA also hosts various fundraisers and celebrations at CSDR, such as a reception in honor of a retired CSDR administrator, Dr. Gerald “Bummy” Burstein, who recently was honored with the Gallaudet University Sesquicentennial Distinguished Alumni award for his national accomplishments and benefactions to the university, and to the city of Riverside.

    Endowment Organizations

    Contributions through endowment organizations make a difference in the lives of our Deaf students as well as future generations. Funds are used for student incentives, educational activities, and other necessities to help CSDR thrive.

    CSDR CAN Logo
    Friends of CSDR logo

    The CSDR Community Alliance Network (CSDR CAN) is comprised of alumni, longtime staff and/or retired employees, who work with the Superintendent to oversee funds that students and school organizations raise for various student extracurricular activities and programs.

    Friends of CSDR is a nonprofit organization dedicated to bridging the sound barrier between the deaf and hearing communities. Friends also assists students in extra-curricular educational endeavors that might not ordinarily be available to them. Lastly, the Bummy Foundation, established by Mr. Burstein, supports select CSDR students who show leadership potential by financing their leadership trainings or retreats.


    California School for the Deaf, Riverside (CSDR) is a component of the State Special Schools and Services Division of the California Department of Education. The school serves Deaf and hard-of-hearing students, between the ages of 3 and 21, who reside in the 11 counties of Southern California.

    To request a tour or enrollment information, send an email to

    Community Liaison

    A picture of Denise Hamilton

    Denise Hamilton

    (951) 248-7700 x4817
    (951) 824-8127 Español
    A picture of Erika Thompson

    Erika Thompson

    Community Resource Specialist
    (951) 824-8097
    (951) 824-8097 Español

    Map and Directions

    Newsletter Sign Up


    Staff Directory - staff names and phone numbers

    California School for the Deaf, Riverside

    3044 Horace Street

    Riverside, CA 92506
    (951) 248-7700
    (951) 824-8070

    Photo Credits : High School Yearbook Students - Cherilyn Barrett - Auna Fergusen - Jens Rechenberg '81 - Jaclyn Vincent

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    California School for the Deaf, Riverside (CSDR)