The Institute of the Deaf of Turin is an institution created at the beginning of the 19th century by the Savoy to care for and teach deaf children and to train their teachers. The first director was the priest Francesco Bracco, who also adopted the experience of Giovanni Battista Scagliotti. The Institute immediately had the dual mission of educating deaf children and training their teachers.
The original seat of the Institute was in Turin, in via Assarotti, in the building erected thanks to the bequest of Countess Ottavia Borghese Masino di Mombello, where Paolo Basso also taught, who, deaf, became vice-director of the Institute in the mid-19th century. In 1965 the building was sold to the City of Turin and the proceeds were used to build the new and larger headquarters in Pianezza, which is still in operation.
At the end of the seventies, the evolution of legislation in the school sector and the change in pedagogical orientations led to a deep crisis in the special institutions, many of which were closed in the following decade. The management of the Institute therefore decided to adapt its educational offer: The boarding school was closed and the special schools were opened to hearing children in the region; at the same time, an innovative pedagogical service to support communication and autonomy for deaf students was set up in public schools in most of the Piedmont region, and extended to Lombardy from 2017.
The Institute of the Deaf of Turin is a non-profit foundation, governed by a Board of Trustees that is fully autonomous in the choice of the direction of activities, within the framework of social solidarity provided for in the current Statutes.