OSEP Letter

OSEP Letter about Visual Impairments

On November 12, 2014, the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) issued a response to an inquiry for policy clarification addressing whether a State educational agency (SEA) and/or local educational agency (LEA) is permitted to establish procedures that further define the disability category, “visual impairment including blindness,” under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).1 Since that time, OSEP has received a request for written guidance to assist SEAs in supporting their LEAs in reaching appropriate eligibility determinations for children with this disability. The purpose of this memorandum is to ensure broad dissemination of the key points made in our November 12, 2014 letter, provide the additional guidance requested on this important issue, and share information about outside resources that may be helpful as you examine your State’s procedures related to the identification and evaluation of children suspected of having a visual impairment including blindness.


Diabetic Retinopathy

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Read an excellent first-hand experience with diabetic retinopathy.  Leonie Watson’s experience losing her sight is one you won’t forget. Share it with others who might chose to ignore their diabetes.

Leonie Watson’s Blog

Parents Seeking Parents

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Children with visual impairments are a low incidence population. That being said, parents of these children are also a low incidence group. Here are some national places to look for support.

National Association of Parents of Children with Visual Impairments

Family Connect

Schools for the Blind in America

Perkins School for the Blind Parent Page

National Organization of Parents of Blind Children

Working to Prevent Blindness

A local nurse aims to help children – she makes sure children are identified having an eye condition, so glasses, procedures, and assistance can be provided.

We know most parents do not have their children’s eyes checked by a specialist unless their pediatrician recommends it. Pediatricians are not eye specialists, and can miss some eye conditions due to the behavior of young children.

Nurse Helping Children

The New Scientific Calculator

It’s here!

Orion TI-30XS MultiView Talking Scientific Calculator

A fully-accessible handheld scientific calculator — ideal for all students, middle school through college. And this calculator is available on Quota!
The Orion TI-30XS MultiView™ Talking Scientific Calculator is a modified TI-30XS MultiView that adds accessibility and additional controls. APH partnered with Orbit Research® and Texas Instruments® to make this powerful calculator accessible.
Unique Access and Screen Review Capability to a Multiline Scientific Calculator The attachment consists of a unit on the back of the calculator with three function keys on the front of the calculator, above the display. These function keys control preferences, volume, rate, pause, silence, and the unique Learn mode. The comprehensive screen review function allows the user to move to previous line, next line, next word, next character, read all, and spell out the last spoken text.

  • Identical display and keypad functionality as the standard TI-30XS; helpful to teachers already familiar with the TI-30XS
  • Full speech access to all menus, mathematical expressions, text, and symbols displayed on the screen
  • Clear, high-quality recorded speech
  • Each key is announced when pressed
  • Comprehensive screen review
  • Unique Learn mode for instantaneous key identification without interrupting operations
  • High capacity, user replaceable, rechargeable battery
  • Battery or AC adapter operation
  • Easy on/off control and auto power-off
  • Fraction/decimal conversion
  • Edit, cut, and paste entries
  • (x-y) tables
  • 1- & 2- variable statistics


  • Talking Scientific Calculator with specially designed hard plastic slide cover and original TI-30XS MultiView hard snap cover
  • Standard A male to Micro-B male USB cable
  • USB wall plug
  • Earphones
  • USB flash drive with documentation
  • Quick-Start Guide in print and braille

APH Link to Calculator