Future Reflections Winter/Spring 2000, Vol. 19 No. 1


Distinguished Educator of Blind ChildrenAward for 2000

by Sharon Maneki

Editorís Note: Sharon Maneki is President of the National Federation of the Blind of Maryland. She also chairs the committee to select the Distinguished Educator of Blind Children for 2000.


The National Federation of the Blind will recognize an outstanding teacher of blind children at our 2000 convention July 2 to July 8, in Atlanta, Georgia. The winner of this award will receive an expense-paid trip to the convention, a check for $500, an appropriate plaque, and an opportunity to make a presentation about the education of blind children to the National Organization of Parents of Blind Children early in the convention.

Anyone who is currently teaching or counseling blind students or administering a program for blind children is eligible to receive this award. It is not necessary to be a member of the National Federation of the Blind to apply. However, the winner must attend the National Convention. Colleagues, supervisors, or friends may nominate teachers or other eligible individuals. The letter of nomination should explain why the teacher is being recommended for this award.

The education of blind children is one of our most important concerns. Attendance at a National Federation of the Blind convention will enrich a teacherís experience by affording him or her the opportunity to meet other teachers who work with blind children, to meet parents, and to meet blind adults who have had experiences in a variety of educational programs. Help us recognize a distinguished teacher by distributing this form and encouraging teachers to submit their credentials. We are pleased to offer this award and look forward to applications from many well-qualified educators.†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††



Please complete the application on the next page and attach the following:

* a letter of nomination from someone (parent, co-worker, supervisor, etc.) who knows your work,

* a letter of recommendation from someone who knows you professionally and knows your philosophy of teaching,

* and a letter from you discussing your beliefs and approach to teaching blind students. In your letter you may wish to discuss topics like the following:


What are your views about when and how students should use Braille, large print, tape recordings, readers, and magnification devices? How do you decide whether a child should use print, Braille, or both? When do you recommend that your students begin the following: reading Braille, writing with a slate and stylus, using a Braille writer, learning to travel independently with a white cane, using computers, and/or using electronic note-takers? How should one determine which students should learn cane travel and which should not? When should keyboarding be introduced, and when should a child be expectedindependently to hand in print assignments?

National Federation of the Blind††† Distinguished Educator††† of Blind Children Award††† 2000 Application




Home address:


City:††††††††††††††††††††††††††† State:†††††††††† Zip:


Phone: (H)†††††††††††††††††††††† (W)






City:†††††††††††††††††††††††††††† State:†††††††††† Zip:


Use a separate sheet of paper and answer the following:

* List your degrees, the institutions from which they were received, and your major area or areas of study.

* How long and in what programs have you worked with blind children?

* In what setting do you currently work?

* Briefly describe your current job and teaching responsibilities.

* Describe your current caseload, i.e. number of students, ages, multiple disabilities, number of Braille reading students, etc.


Attach the three required letters to this application and send all material by May 15, 2000, to Sharon Maneki, Chairwoman, Teacher Award Committee, 5843 Blue Sky Street, Elkridge, Maryland 21075; (410) 379-6130.