Both KPISL and PISL have become endangered languages. KPISL is not much used among the pueblo’s younger generation owing to their learning school English, ASL, or signs that follow the spoken English word order. Before the 1990s, American Indian Deaf/Hard-of-Hearing tribal members usually left home to attend a residential school for the deaf located far away (Baker, 1997; Lane, Hoffmeister, & Bahan, 1996).
At the school, there was usually no formal instruction of American Indian or American Indian culture and signs; only Deaf culture and ASL were taught, leading many American Indian students to join the “Deaf World.” After graduation, the students had to make difficult decisions about where and how to establish themselves: on the pueblos with hearing families and friends, in urban areas with other Deaf/Hard-of-Hearing people, or in border towns with limited access to both groups.How come there were no efforts by Deaf educators at the time to help deaf Indians in deaf schools on helping preserve their Indian Sign Language heritage in the process and encourage them to maintain that contact and relationship with their Indian elders on ISL? How come no public apologies by those schools? No apologies from NAD on behalf of the schools across the United States, including Gallaudet University? Maybe it's time that NAD and other deaf institutions make the effort to apologize for helping with some of the eradication of deaf Indians' own ISL when they were forced to choose and with no effort to help them preserve and maintain their own ISL identity? Perhaps NAD does not need to apologize? Should any apology be needed at all? After all, there are some culpability involved here and not exclusively just the "government" of which I agree played an almost exclusive role in helping ISL and its signing heritage disappear. Regardless, should an apology be in order from NAD on behalf of deaf schools who may have played a part of the role?