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Parents In The Know! Where Are the Accessible Textbooks?

“Good morning students, let’s begin by opening our textbooks to page 1…”

Has your child been welcomed to a new school year with a greeting like this? Were they ready with an accessible version of their textbook they could read?

For many students with print disabilities, traditional textbooks are not an option. Accessible versions, like digital books, now provide a promising alternative. Accessible textbooks allow students to listen to words being spoken, read words on the computer screen, look up word definitions and much more.

Until recently, getting accessible textbooks has been difficult.

Parents have alerted teachers of their children’s needs, contacted textbook publishers directly, and even scanned textbooks into digital formats.

Even with these noble efforts, there are still delays. Some children wait days, weeks, and even months.  By the time they receive their accessible textbooks, they are already behind.

IDEA 2004 (The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004) created a pathway to providing accessible textbooks more easily.  This included the creation of the NIMAC – http://nimac.us/ , a national repository for accessible textbooks, and since its inception, Bookshare has helped to provide access to over 1,700 K-12 NIMAC textbooks for qualified Bookshare members with IEPs.

Want to learn more? Attend the upcoming Bookshare webinar titled, “How to get my child accessible textbooks,” and learn:

What is the NIMAC? Who is eligible for NIMAC textbooks? How do students get access to NIMAC textbooks through Bookshare? What can parents do to help qualified children?

This webinar takes place Wednesday, September 22, 2010 at 1:00 PM ET, 12:00 PM CT, 11:00 AM MT, 10:00 AM PT.  Attend the live broadcast or sign up to receive a post-webinar recording. Register today! – https://cc.readytalk.com/r/fxnr1dyersrf

Miss the last parent webinar? No problem! We recorded the previous “Bookshare 101 for Parents” webinar.  Watch or listen to the recording. – http://cc.readytalk.com/play?id=fo3ufh

 Take a short survey! Let Bookshare know how we are doing. Please take this short survey – http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/366768/Bookshare-User-Survey to provide some feedback and any success stories you would like to share with Bookshare!

Thanks for reading this month’s installment of Parents in the Know. We look forward to your comments and feedback, make sure you share your thoughts with us!

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