[blindkid] Elementary School iPad Experience

Brandon and Sarah lanesims at gmail.com
Tue Jan 29 19:48:21 UTC 2013

This thread suddenly made me wonder, what does it take to get a voice
on the committee that makes text/e-text purchasing decisions for the
local district in order to assure that accessibility becomes and
remains a top priority?

Perhaps naively, I thought that all texts were required to coordinate
with NIMAC to provide accessible files of the text (NIMAS files) for
distibution to blind students. I really don't understand what all is
involved here and maybe I have it wrong...more research needed.

We've just begun to dabble in assistive tech for Emilia (3rd grade)
with a Brailliant, ipod, and Voiceover. So far, its been a lonely road
- no support from school staff to speak of yet. I started the year by
scanning from the inaccessible spelling/grammar workbook. I have
realized now that simply typing in the text is tedious, but actually
more efficient for most of the material. This is do-able in 3rd grade,
but will be less so in higher grades.

If anyone here knows more about NIMAS/NIMAC, please chime in.

Following is a snippet from an FAQ on NIMAC from the following website:

Question A-8: Instructional materials such as textbooks are typically
acquired through textbook purchasing offices at the SEA or LEA level.
Are these offices required to comply with NIMAS requirements in their
purchase of textbooks and other instructional materials?

Answer: If an SEA chooses to coordinate with the NIMAC, the SEA must,
as part of any print instructional materials adoption process,
procurement contract, or other practice or instrument used for
purchase of print instructional materials, enter into a written
contract with the publisher of the print instructional materials to--
1) require the publisher to prepare and, on or before delivery of the
print instructional materials, provide to the NIMAC electronic files
containing the contents of the print instructional materials using the
NIMAS; or 2) “purchase instructional materials from the publisher that
are produced in or may be rendered in specialized formats.”  (See 34
CFR §300.172(c) and 300.210(a).) The SEA must ensure that all public
agencies take all reasonable steps to provide instructional materials
in accessible formats to children with disabilities who need those
instructional materials at the same time as other children who receive
instructional materials (34 CFR §300.172(b)(4)). Therefore, SEAs
should inform all relevant offices and parties within the State,
including LEAs, of their obligation to meet the requirements for
access to instructional materials. For example, SEAs and LEAs should
communicate these requirements to textbook adoption committees, as
well as procurement and contracting offices.

Brandon Lane

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