[Nfbc-info] [nagdu] CA State Board tries to regulate out-of-state schools

tina thomas tinadt at sbcglobal.net
Sat Mar 21 02:08:19 UTC 2009

Hello Federationists- 
Please read the letter concerning the California  State guide dogs for the
blind  Board's open letter to out of state schools

Letter to out-of-state schools
Re: Compliance with California State Law Pertaining to Guide Dogs

Dear Out-of-State School:

On July 8, 1947, Governor Earl Warren signed into law the Guide Dog Act.
This act was established to keep out maverick guide dog schools, protect the
visually impaired by setting minimum standards of training, provide
oversight for the disposition of donor funds and maintain minimum competency
of training for licensed guide dog instructors.

The purpose of this letter is twofold. First, the Board wishes to inform all
out-of-state schools the statutes requiring compliance with licensure
requirements for instruction in the state of California. Second, the Board
has a process for compliance - namely the examination for an instructor
license. If a candidate for licensure meets the minimum requirements to sit
for the examination, they are eligible for licensure status. The examination
is given twice per year and involves a one-day Written Exam and a one-day
Oral/Practical Exam. Fingerprints are also required before taking the

First, California law requires a license for the sale or the giving of a
guide dog. Business and Professions Code section 7210 requires that:

It shall be unlawful for any person to sell, offer for sale, give, hire or
furnish under any other arrangement, any guide dog or seeing-eye dog or to
engage in the business or occupation of training any such dog unless he
holds a valid and unimpaired license issued pursuant to the provisions of
this chapter.

Second, California law requires guide dog instructors to be licensed. An
instructor "means a person who instructs blind persons in the use of guide
dogs or who engages in the business of training, selling, hiring, or
supplying guide dogs for the blind." 
California law as set forth in 16 CCR section 2284 requires:

Anyone instructing a blind person in the use of a guide dog must be licensed
by the Board, provided, however, that a school may employ apprentices to
assist in such instruction. No apprentice shall act as an instructor except
under the direct and immediate supervision of a licensed instructor.

Last, B&P Code Section 7213 provides that:

Violation of any provision of this chapter is a misdemeanor.

The process for obtaining an instructor license begins with an examination.
To qualify to take the examination, the individual must have the following
qualifications as set forth in Statute (B&P Code Section 7209) -- which
states the following:

[P]erson to be eligible for examination as an instructor must (1) have a
knowledge of the special problems of the blind and how to teach them, (2) be
able to demonstrate by actual blindfold test under traffic conditions his
ability to train guide dogs with whom a blind person would be safe, (3) be
suited temperamentally and otherwise to instruct blind persons in the use of
guide dogs, and, (4) have had at least three years actual experience,
comprising such number of hours as the Board may require, as an instructor,
and have handled twenty-two (22) man-dog units; or its equivalent, as
determined by the Board, as an apprentice under a licensed instructor or
under an instructor in a school satisfactory to the Board.

Applicants for the instructor license are required to take both a written
and practical/oral examination. Applicants must provide a 15-30 minute video
demonstrating instruction skills. A panel of subject matter experts will
review the video and evaluate the candidate's oral defense of said video.
The five steps to licensing are available on the Board's Web site.
Applicants may also obtain the application for examination at

The instructor licenses are good for one year and are renewed each year
thereafter for a fee of $100. Along with the fee, an instructor must provide
the Board with evidence of continuing education (either 8 hours of
course/seminar attendance or 16 hours of attendance at meetings of guide dog
users or organizations of the blind).

If you have any questions about the laws cited above, please feel free to
contact me at               (916) 574-7825       . Thank you.


Antonette Sorrick

Executive Officer, State Board of Guide Dogs for the Blind

nagdu mailing list
nagdu at nfbnet.org
To unsubscribe, change your list options or get your account info for nagdu:

No virus found in this incoming message.
Checked by AVG. 
Version: 7.5.557 / Virus Database: 270.11.21/2014 - Release Date: 3/20/2009
6:59 AM

No virus found in this outgoing message.
Checked by AVG. 
Version: 7.5.557 / Virus Database: 270.11.21/2014 - Release Date: 3/20/2009
6:59 AM

More information about the NFBC-Info mailing list