Future Reflections Fall 1991
Hear Ye! Hear Ye!
SEMINAR TAPES We now have cassette tapes available of the Parents of Blind Children Seminar which was held this year in New Orleans at the National Convention of the National Federation of the Blind. The theme of the seminar was: We Are Changing What It Means To Be Blind. Some outstanding speeches were given by Dr. Kenneth Jernigan, James Gashel (NFB Director of Governmental Affairs), and many others, including parents and blind college students. The set of three tapes costs $6.00. Orders may be placed by writing to: National Federation of the Blind, 1800 Johnson Street, Baltimore, Maryland 21230. Be sure to enclose your check or money order with your request.
HOMEWORK HOTLINE We have been asked to print the following information. Anthony Cangelosi and Brooks Communications are interested in establishing a "homework hotline," which would allow blind and visually impaired middle school and high school students to get in touch with volunteers (college students and business and community volunteers) for help in their studies. We plan to provide this free service through an 800 number, but we would like readers' input to help us understand how to establish a service that would be genuinely useful and readily available to those who would use it. Please let us know your ideas about how best to structure the service, any resources you think we should know about, and whether you have interest in volunteering your expertise. You may answer in cassette, in print, or by phone to Mr. Anthony Cangelosi at Brooks Communications, 240 Sand Springs Road, Williamstown, MA 01267; (413) 458-8030. We look forward to hearing from you.
COLORING SCREENS FOR SALE What is a Coloring Screen? A Coloring Screen is a simple, inexpensive item which allows blind children to feel what they draw and color with a crayon. It is made up of a piece of window screening which has been taped onto a sturdy cardboard backing (no sharp edges). The child places an ordinary piece of drawing paper on top of the screen, picks up a crayon, and- Presto-they have an instant raised line drawing! When used for coloring it provides a pleasant bumpy sensation along the arm of the young artist. Coloring Screens are great for kids in the classroom, at home, in Sunday school, at a Brownie or Cub Scout troop meeting, or anyplace a child would be drawing and coloring. Thanks to the creative and volunteer efforts of Carol Castellano and her husband Bill Cucco, the NFB Parents of Blind Children Division has some handmade Coloring Screens which we can make available to parents and others. The screens come in two sizes: 11"x14" ($5.00) and 14"x17" ($6.50). To order your coloring screen send your request (please specify size) and a check or money order made out to Parents of Blind Children, to: Coloring Screens, 23 Alexander Avenue, Madison, NJ 07940. Screens will be mailed free matter for the blind. Proceeds from the sale will benefit the Parents of Blind Children Division.
ECOLOGY AND CAROLING This information comes from the National Braille Press's Summer Catalog of Exciting New Braille Products, 1991. To order a catalog write to: National Braille Press, 88 St. Stephens Street, Boston, MA 02115. Telephone number (617) 266-6160. You Can Save The Planet: As few books in the decade have ever done, 50 Simple Things You Can Do To Save The Earth empowers the individual to get up and do something about global environmental problems. Did you know the junk mail Americans receive in one day could produce enough energy to heat 250,000 homes? Or that during a beach cleanup along 300 miles of Texas shoreline, 15,600 plastic six-pack rings were found in 3 hours? Do you know why six-pack holders are dangerous to the planet? 50 Simple Things tells you exactly what to do to solve these problems, quickly, inexpensively, and easily. You no longer have an excuse: we have located and Brailled THE BOOK on the environment for you to read-and it only costs $4.95. Christmas Carols: Remembering the first verse of a favorite carol, like "Deck the hall with boughs of holly..." is easy. But what about the second verse, and the third? If you would like your own Braille copy of the words to 14 famous Christmas carols, then be sure to order our handy carry-size booklet Christmas Carols for just $5. It includes Good Christian Men Rejoice, 0 Little Town of Bethlehem, God Rest You Merry Gentlemen, Silent Night, Hark! The Herald Angels Sing, 0 Come All Ye Faithful, Away in a Manger, Joy to the World, We Three Kings of Orient Are, Deck the Hall, and The Wassail Song.
MORE BRAILLE BOOKS We have been asked to print the following announcement. Seedlings Braille Books for Children's new 1992 catalog will be available starting 9/1/91. Twenty exciting new selections have been added, bringing the total number of books available in Braille to 144! Prices have not been raised for the sixth straight year, and the average price is just $8.00 per book (which is half of what it costs to produce the books) !The types of books offered range from board books for infants, complete with print, Braille, pictures, and textures, to the Newbery Award winner Number The Stars by Lois Lowry for 10 to 14 year olds. These books are always in stock-no back orders! Prompt shipping is a high priority, but please order early to avoid the holiday rush!! To obtain a catalog, just write to: Seedlings, P. O. Box 2395, Livonia, Michigan 48151-0395 or call (313) 427-8552.
TAPING THE IEP Reprinted from Advocacy Services of South Dakota, July 1991. The Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) was recently asked whether local school districts could prohibit parents from tape-recording IEP meetings. OSEP replied that the Department of Education does not have the authority to require or prohibit use of tape recorders at IEP meeting because it is not addressed in the regulations, but its informal view would permit their use. EHLR 213:127 (1988).OSEP noted that if the recording is made or used by school officials, the recording itself would be an "educational record," and therefore would be subject to the confidentiality requirements in both statutes and their implementing regulations. OSEP further reviewed case law under the subject of right to privacy. There, cases have held that the rights of a handicapped child and the child's parents could be violated if school officials recorded an IEP meeting without their permission. However, the privacy rights of school officials would not be violated by tape-recording an IEP meeting because they are public officials serving in an official capacity.
NEW PRODUCTS The following information comes from Exceptional Teaching Aids. To order a catalog write to: Exceptional Teaching Aids, 20102 Woodbine Avenue, Castro Valley, CA 94546; (415) 582-4859. Listen & Learn Farm Animals: Ages 6-36 months. Texas Instruments has taken the sounds of farmyard animals and placed them in a bright yellow, talking ball. The animal sounds activate automatically with the ball's motion and shut off when baby is finished playing. This talking ball is designed for safety. It is rugged and durable. Shellsorts: Students learn by manipulating these genuine shells. The kit contains 48 real shells. This collection contains shells of 12 distinct types and there are four shells of each type. Each set of four shells varies in size, providing a wide variety of educational options. Included with this kit are scientific facts about the shells and suggestions for educational applications in areas such as Social Studies, Science, Arithmetic, Language, and Art. Software Available From Exceptional Teaching Aids: Word-TalkTM Exceptional Teaching Aids provides some valuable extras for Word-Talk purchasers: l. Two blank disks for data. 2. A print supplement with helpful information about creating and using data disks. 3. A recorded cassette to help in creating data disks. 4. A talking Apple User's Utility Disk-tips on its use are included on the recorded cassette. Sensible SpellerTM Exceptional Teaching Aids provides a supplementary step-by-step print guide and a taped tour of the program. Braille TalkTM allows you to send your Word-Talk files to a Braille embosser. It knows regular Library of Congress formatting rules but is not designed for complicated textbook Braille production.
TECHNOLOGY SURVEY We were recently asked to print the following information regarding a survey conducted by the Rancho Rehabilitation Engineering Program, Project Threshold. If you are interested in participating, please contact them at: 7601 E. Imperial Hwy., 500 Hut, Downey, CA 90242; (213) 940-8116; FAX: (213) 803-6117. Dear Colleague: We need your help! We are trying to identify the families of children with disabilities who have had technology recommended for them in the last two years. A survey will be conducted with these consumers to determine their experiences in obtaining funding. It is anticipated that the survey will take 30 minutes. The results of the survey will be used in the development of a consumer guide to funding assistive technology. This project is supported by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research and is part of the Rehabilitation Engineering Center on Technology for Children with Orthopedic Disabilities. We would greatly appreciate your help in identifying families of children who meet the following criteria: 0-21 years of age; have a physical, cognitive and/or sensory disability; had technology recommended for them within last two years regardless of whether or not they received it; the cost of the technology was $500 or more. We are hoping to obtain information related to funding a variety of technologies such as bath lifts, environmental control systems, computers and communication devices.
DO-DOTS We have been asked to print the following information about a new product from Code-A- Vision, Inc., P. O. Box 10506, Pompano Beach, Florida 33060. Do-Dots are little clear plastic Braille buttons, one male, one female. These snap together easily, and non-destructively, through hem, cuff, or collar. One button tells the clothing design (light or dark, print, plaid, stripes or plain). The other side has Braille symbols for 45 different colors. A Braille-coded key to the abbreviations accompanies each packet.Do-Dots are available in packages of 100 sets for $51.95 check or money order plus $4 shipping-handling (Florida residents add 6% sales tax.)
SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS RULINGS The following information is from the Pacesetter, June 1991. Attorney's fees-A court may award reasonable attorney's fees to parents or guardians of a child with disabilities if they prevail in administrative proceedings under the IDEA. This provision of the Handicapped Children's Protection Act was upheld when the Supreme Court declined to review a case in which a prevailing party brought a civil action solely to obtain attorney's fees. Education beyond age 21-A school district may be required to educate a child with disabilities beyond age 21 if it needs to make up for time lost earlier in the child's life when the district failed to provide appropriate education. This decision by the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals was upheld when the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review the case.
FALL FESTIVAL The New Jersey Library for the Blind and Handicapped will be holding its ninth annual Fall Festival on Saturday, September 28, 1991. The festival will run from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. It will be held at the Library at 2300 Stuyvesant Avenue, Trenton, New Jersey. This year's first speaker will be Jamie Hilton who is the director of the New Jersey Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired. She will speak about her agenda for the Commission in this period of fiscal austerity. This is an excellent chance for people who use the commission to meet her. In the afternoon the adults can sit back and listen to the storytellers for Beauty and the Beast as they take us back to that wonderful world of "Once upon a time.... Other activities will include exhibits by many agencies, organizations, and companies providing services or selling aids for use by blind or handicapped people; a demonstration by Seeing Eye Puppies; as well as programs for children. For more information about the Fall Festival, call (609) 530-3236 or call (800) 792-8322 (New Jersey only).
NEW ADDRESS We recently received the following information from Eyes of Faith Ministries, Kenneth E. Gould, Director. Dear Friends: These past few months we have been making some major decisions with regard to our work for blind children and adults. We are happy to announce that our board of directors has given its approval for our relocation next month to Dallas, Texas. Please pass the following information along to your publications department, as we would like to continue receiving regular mailings from you, including Future Reflections. Also, you may have us listed in your resource listings as a source for Christian education materials in Braille, including textbooks required by private Christian schools and home-schools. Our permanent address, effective June 15, is Post Office Box 743336, Dallas, Texas 75374-3336. Our new phone number is (214) 669-1103.
DESCRIPTIVE VIDEO We have been asked to share the following information. Descriptive Video Service (DVS) is a free service carried by PBS to make television accessible to people who are blind or visually impaired. DVS provides narrated descriptions of a television program's key visual elements without interfering with the program audio or dialogue. The narration describes visual elements such as actions, settings, scene changes and body language. To receive DVS, a viewer must have either a stereo TV or a stereo VCR that includes the Separate Audio Program (SAP) channel. SAP is a standard feature on most new stereo televisions and video cassette recorders. Stereo TV decoders that convert monaural TV sets to stereo with SAP also can be purchased through some electronics stores and mail order companies. A viewer must also live within range of a PBS station that carries DVS. For more information contact: Descriptive Video Service, WGBH, 125 Western Avenue, Boston, MA 02134; (617) 492-2777 extension 3490.
FOR MICHIGAN CHILDREN This announcement appeared in the 1992 Seedlings Catalog. The Detroit Free Press' Gift of Reading Program will donate a Braille book to any blind child in Michigan, ages 0-12. Please send the child's name, address, age, reading level, and interest areas to Seedlings-Gift of Reading, P.O. Box 2395, Livonia, Ml 48151-0395 by November 15, 1991, so that we can mail the book in time for the December holidays!