Division on Visual Impairments

VIDBE Quarterly Volume 59(5)

A quarterly newsletter from the Council for Exceptional Children's Division on Visual Impairments containing practitioner tips for Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments, Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialists, and other professionals.

Issue link: http://dvi.uberflip.com/i/422067

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Page 51 of 72

Editor's note: When I asked state partners to share what they were doing to maximize resources and meet the needs of this lowest of low-incidence disability group, they shared these innovations for meeting the needs of professionals across great distances. Going the Distance: State Snapshots of Virtual Technical Assistance to Professionals and Teams Serving Students who are Deafblind Kansas Deaf-Blind Project at Kansas School for the Blind Megan Cote, Director, mcote@kssdb.org Rebecca Obold-Geary, Co-Director, roboldgeary@kssdb.org In order to meet the demands of "in real time" information and idea sharing, the Kansas Deaf-Blind Project began implementing a distance mentorship model of technical assistance where password protected team collaboration sites are created for individual learner teams to share progress and information related to child outcomes. Having well over one hundred learners identified on their deaf-blind registry, the two part time staff were finding it hard to meet the individual needs of all of the teams and visit the school sites frequently enough to see consistent child and provider change. Weekly school teams are asked to supply video of the learner around targeted routines and the project staff, then view the video and give the school team input on strategies for improving the routines. Monthly the teams meet virtually through Adobe connect with the project staff to review action plans and target next steps to be achieved the following month. This process has enabled the project staff to have more consistent contact with the service providers and have also allowed the parents to be an integral part of the collaboration process. Further, the parents end up with a rich repository of video of their child's skills that helps aid in transitions from classroom to classroom and school to school. 52

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