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Our School

The Lake Drive Program provides New Jersey's most comprehensive continuum of educational opportunities for deaf and hard of hearing children, from ages 3 to 21, empowering them to fulfill their individual academic, communicative, social and personal potential. 

Mission Statement

The mission of the Lake Drive Program is to create a community of self-empowered learners in an atmosphere of mutual respect and trust that will allow each individual student to reach their individual academic, communicative, social and personal potential.

"Individual Child, Individual Potential"


The Lake Drive Program has a distinguished history of excellence. Since 1969, Lake Drive has provided programming in deaf education.  We continue to meet the changing and varied needs of deaf and hard of hearing children. The Lake Drive Program continues to build upon its foundation of quality and strengths, as we expand our knowledge and skills to address the current trends in deaf education. The program is dedicated to providing an education that is accessible to deaf and hard of hearing learners. 


Lake Drive was established in 1969, under the auspices of the Mountain Lakes Board of Education as an educational day school alternative to residential placement in the State School for the Deaf. It opened in rented quarters in The Community Church in Mountain Lakes, with one teacher, a teacher aide, a speech therapist, a part-time consultant audiologist, a part-time consultant speech therapist and seven students. Over the next three years the number of students increased to 21. The faculty kept pace and by 1972, having outgrown the physical facility, the school moved to its present location at Lake Drive School. For the first 10 years at Lake Drive School, our program was housed within the Mountain Lakes fifth and sixth grade building. In 1978, the program became the sole occupant of the building at Lake Drive School and Laura McKirdy, Ph.D. was appointed principal, a position she held until her retirement in 2004.  Currently, the Lake Drive Principal is Julie Lazeration.

Today, the school serves students, ages 3 through 21, from school districts in north and central New Jersey. In addition to those in the Lake Drive School building, Lake Drive students are also attend at Wildwood Elementary School, Briarcliff Middle School and Mountain Lakes High School, all within the Mountain Lakes School District. The Lake Drive Program also provides mainstream itinerant support program. Currently, five teachers of the deaf, as well as an educational audiologist, travel throughout central and north New Jersey to provide services to deaf and hard of hearing students in their home school districts. High School students have an opportunity to apply to Morris County Vocational School for a shared-time program in a specific area.

The Lake Drive Program

Instructional Option
  • Listening and spoken language
  • Total Communication

Lake Drive Programs range from specialized self-contained classrooms to mainstream education with support services.

The Continuum of Program Opportunities
  • Preschool
  • Mainstream and Self-Contained Opportunities throughout the Mountain Lakes School District
  • Elementary School Program
  • Middle School Program
  • High School Program
  • Vocational Technical Classes
  • Mainstream Support Services
Family Services
  • Sign Language Classes
  • Parent support
  • Resource Library
  • Family Events
  • Home and School Association
  • Counseling Services 
Comprehensive Resources
  • Multi-disciplinary Team of Experienced Staff with Expertise and Training in Working with Children with Hearing Loss
  • Audiology Department
  • Speech and Language Services
  • Auditory Verbal Therapy
  • Physical Therapy
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Mental Health Services
  • Sign Language Interpreting Services