[blindkid] Fwd: National Federation of the Blind Commends Department of Education for New Guidelines on Braille Instruction

Carol Castellano carol_castellano at verizon.net
Thu Jun 20 02:19:58 UTC 2013

>Chris Danielsen
>Director of Public Relations
>National Federation of the Blind
>(410) 659-9314, extension 2330
>(410) 262-1281 (Cell)
><mailto:cdanielsen at nfb.org>cdanielsen at nfb.org
>National Federation of the Blind Commends Department of Education
>for New Guidelines on Braille Instruction
>Baltimore, Maryland (June 19, 2013): <http://www.nfb.org/>The 
>National Federation of the Blind commended the Department of 
>Education for guidelines on Braille instruction issued in 
>Dear Colleague Letter earlier today.  The letter clarifies the 
>provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) 
>regarding Braille instruction.
>Dr. Marc Maurer, President of 
><http://www.facebook.com/NationalFederationoftheBlind>the National 
>Federation of the Blind, said: "We commend the Department of 
>Education for recognizing that every blind child needs to be given 
>the opportunity to learn Braille.  Knowing how to read and write 
>Braille is critical to the ultimate success of blind children.  The 
>department's action today puts school administrators on notice that 
>Braille instruction must be provided to blind children unless a 
>thorough and rigorous evaluation demonstrates that Braille is not 
>appropriate.  The guidelines also make it clear that Braille is 
>appropriate for blind children who have some vision, especially if 
>their eye condition is degenerative and they are therefore likely to 
>continue to lose vision.  Finally, the guidelines emphasize that 
>external factors like the expense of providing Braille instruction 
>or the availability of audio or other alternative formats cannot be 
>used as an excuse to deny Braille instruction to blind children.  We 
>hope and believe that these clarifications will reverse the harmful 
>decline in Braille instruction that has left too many blind people 
>functionally illiterate, and will restore Braille to its proper 
>place as the most effective reading and writing medium for blind people."
>"The U.S. Department of Education is committed to ensuring that 
>children who are blind and visually impaired have access to Braille 
>instruction and Braille materials," said Michael Yudin, Acting 
>Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative 
>Services at the Department of Education.  "The ability to read and 
>write Braille competently and efficiently is critical to ensuring 
>students who are blind and visually impaired graduate from high 
>school college and career ready."
>On May 1, 2012, Senator Patty Murray of Washington, along with 
>twenty-five Senate cosigners, 
>to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to express concern that blind 
>students in America were not receiving adequate instruction in 
>Braille, the recognized reading and writing medium for the blind, 
>and were therefore falling behind their sighted peers in school.
>About the National Federation of the Blind
>The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) is the oldest, largest, 
>and most influential nationwide membership organization of blind 
>people in the United States.  Founded in 1940, the NFB advocates for 
>the civil rights and equality of blind Americans, and develops 
>innovative education, technology, and training programs to provide 
>the blind and those who are losing vision with the tools they need 
>to become independent and successful.  We need your support.  To 
>make a donation, please go to <http://www.nfb.org/>www.nfb.org.
>Forwarded by:
>Brian A. Mackey
>Brian A. Mackey
>Mackey Enterprises LLC
>National Federation of the Blind of NJ, Secretary
><mailto:bmackey88 at gmail.com>bmackey88 at gmail.com
>"Happy are those who dream dreams and are willing to pay the price 
>to make those dreams come true."
>         - Vince Papale

Carol Castellano
Parents of Blind Children-NJ
Director of Programs
National Organization of Parents of Blind Children
carol_castellano at verizon.net

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