Located in the Jackson Heights neighborhood of Queens, the Lexington School for the Deaf has educated deaf and hard of hearing children since 1864. With more than four hundred students, it is the largest school for the deaf in the state of New York. Fully accredited, Lexington confers both Regents and IEP diplomas.

Lexington was founded by Hannah and Isaac Rosenfeld, whose daughter Carrie contracted scarlet fever as an infant and became deaf. The only deaf education available at the time involved manual communication, and the Rosenfelds wanted Carrie to be taught orally. They traveled to Germany and met Bernard Englesmann, a teacher of articulation who could teach deaf children to speak and lipread. The Rosenfelds hired him to begin a school in New York City, and in 1864 the first class was held at their home at 367 Broadway in Manhattan; six students attended that first year. This was the first oral school for the deaf in the United States, and within three years it was formally incorporated as the Institution for the Improved Instruction of Deaf-Mutes. Originally a private school, Lexington began receiving public aid in 1868 when the New York City Board of Education donated two chalkboards and three dozen desks and chairs. In 1870, the school was granted full state support for the students' tuition, but private funds continued to provide the money for teacher training, research, field trips, and the like; the school remains a private state-supported institution to this day. As parents learned about the school, the number of students enrolled increased and in 1880 administrators constructed a building on Lexington Avenue, from which the school gets its current name. Its present location is at 30th Avenue and 75th Street in Jackson Heights.

Because Lexington began as a private school, its students were mostly from affluent families who could afford to send their children there. When state funding was introduced, enrollment was opened to everyone and today it is ethnically diverse and hosts a Hispanic Resource Team and a Black Culture Club.

Leah Cohen's 1995 book Train Go Sorry, a look at Deaf culture, focused primarily on Lexington.

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