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Summer 2001 Volume 6, No. 3


Things are momentarily quiet here at TSBVI Outreach with many of the staff out on much deserved vacations. The spring wrapped up with a flurry of activity that slide into the early part of June with Texas Focus in Ft. Worth. All reports from folks who were able to attend the conference indicate that this was another very informative event for both the families and professionals who attended and a welcome focus on students with low vision.

Outreach staff have been working on a number of other projects as well. One in particular that I am happy to report on is a project we did in collaboration with DB-Link, the National Information Clearinghouse on Children with Deaf-Blindness. My colleague, Robbie Blaha, and I have written a book, Introduction to Sexuality Education for Individuals Who Are Deaf-Blind and Significantly Developmentally Delayed, which DB-Link will publish. We anticipate this book becoming available in the Fall of 2001. You may contact DB-Link at (800) 438-9376 or email dblink@tr.wou.edu to get more information about receiving a copy. We very much appreciate DB-Link giving us an opportunity to make this happen. We hope that families and professionals in Texas and other parts of the country will find the information useful.

Robbie will also have another publication coming out soon through the TSBVI Curriculum Department. The book, Calendars for Students with Multiple Impairments Including Deafblindness, provides detailed information on determining which type of calendar to use with a child, designing the calendar, and transitioning a student to the next

level of calendar usage. It also provides information about how a calendar can serve as a tool not only for scheduling, but more importantly for building receptive and expressive language and conversational skills. I am very excited about this book. I think parents will find it easy to understand and quite helpful in getting a calendar system going with their child.

Another event the gang here in Outreach is looking forward to is having Holly Cooper, our new Technology Specialist, join us in August. Holly has been an itinerant teacher of the visually impaired in Lewisville ISD and Dallas ISD, a classroom teacher of children with multiple disabilities in Ft. Worth, and has had experience with deaf and deafblind students as a teacher aide and interpreter in Mesquite and as a graduate assistant at Callier Center for Communication Disorders in Dallas. Holly has long had an interest in assistive technology and augmentative communication systems. She also served on the assistive technology team in Lewisville ISD. We are glad to have Holly join us and know that you will be glad to see her out and about in Texas this next school year.

Sharon Nichols, our other Technology Specialist, is thrilled to have a technology partner with Outreach next year. She is looking forward to working with Holly and having her support in meeting the technology needs of the staff and students in the local ISDs.

Please take time to complete the annual SEE/HEAR and Outreach survey included in this edition of SEE/HEAR. Your feedback on the newsletter and other Outreach activities is very important to us as we plan for the coming year. We really do read every one of them and many of the changes made to SEE/HEAR have come from the feedback you sent to us. We also utilize this information in planning new workshops and other training activities. So, before you sit down to read SEE/HEAR, please take a few minutes and fill out the survey.

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Last Revision: July 30, 2002