Brief History & Milestones

1937- 1939
Formative Years
Founder Rev. F. W. Gilby


  • Jamaica Association for the Deaf established in 1938
  • First Adult Deaf Club formed
  • First Unit Class for the Deaf commenced at the Kingston Senior School



Establishment of Deaf Education 
C.B. Facey – Chairman


  • St. Christopher’s School for the Deaf opened in St. Ann
  • Reliance on expatriate teachers of the Deaf
  • Oralism promoted in school but sign language flourished among deaf students



Development of Deaf Education 
Lister Mair – Chairman


  • Service Committee mandated to identify and refer deaf children to school
  • Sponsorship of Jamaicans to be trained as teachers of the deaf in Europe
  • Strategic planning and fundraising for programme expansion in Kingston



Expansion of JAD Services
R. Danny Williams – Chairman


  • Central administrative office established at 9 Marescaux Road in Kingston
  • Adult services committee develops into Social Services Department
  • Rubella “German Measles” pandemic
  • Lister Mair/Gilby School and Hostel opened at Hope Estate
  • Integrated Unit established at St Hugh’s Preparatory School
  • Sponsorship of Jamaicans to be trained as teachers of the Deaf in Canada and Europe



Programme Consolidation
Herbert Hall – Chairman


  • JAD schools become grant aided
  • JAD initiates advocacy for Rubella immunization
  • Establishment of the Lister Mair/Gilby Prep, JAD Pre-School Centre, Port Antonio Unit and JAMAL Unit for the Deaf
  • May Pen Unit Class for the Deaf taken over by JAD
  • JAD foster the development of training for teachers of the deaf at Mico and UWI
  • Audiological Services established



Deaf Cultural Awareness
Herbert Hall – Chairman


  • Total Communication utilised extensively in JAD schools
  • Integrated Unit established at Excelsior Primary School
  • Pre vocational programme developed at Lister Mair/Gilby School



Deaf Community Participation
Herbert Hall – Chairman


  • Facilities constructed for Danny Williams School and Pre-School Centre at Hope Estate
  • Capital Hearing Services and JAD Binders established
  • JAD participate in framing National Policy on Disability
  • Deaf Advancement Programme launched
  • Lister Mair/Gilby Evening Institute established


2000 – 2005
Partnership for Development
Herbert Hall - Chairman


  • Deaf community representatives appointed to management committees
  • Bilingual approach to Deaf Education endorsed by JAD Board
  • Deaf adults employed in JAD Schools as language and cultural models
  • JAD support Deaf community advocacy for drivers licences
  • Clinical services upgraded
  • Parent advocacy group established
  • Strong partnerships developed with US groups and professionals