Three Things Parents Should Know About Assistive Technology

Cecilia Robinson Listen to Cecilia Robinson's advice on the three things parents most need to know about assistive technology skills.

Transcript

I'm Cecilia Robinson, and I work at Region 4 Education Service Center in Houston, Texas. My job is to provide professional development in assistive technology and visual impairments for our teachers and also our assistive technology specialists in the district.

What are the three things you want to ensure that parents know about the need for assistive technology?

Three things that I would like for parents to know about assistive technology are....

Number one, they must know that technology has to be considered for their child with visual impairments. The reason is that it is written in IDEA 2004 that assistive technology must be considered for students with disabilities. And usually, three things will happen: where the consideration process will tell us or the team who is working with your child that assistive technology is needed, or assistive technology is not needed, or more information is needed.

Number-two thing that I want parents to know about is working with the school personnel and also the child's IEP team in getting assistive technology for the child. Ask about services because IDEA talks about assistive technology in terms of the device and services. That means, who is going to teach your child to use the technology? And who is going to let you know and teach you a little bit about how the assistive technology is going to work for your child?

The third thing that parents need to know is their child's current needs for technology. And for needs I mean educational needs. There are many choices out there but what the educational team is focusing on is how the technology is going to help your child with visual impairments to learn in school and to be successful. There must be some foundational skills, and it's kind of like building a house; you have a good foundation, and then you build the frame, and then you put the rest of the materials to make the house strong.

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