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The current English Braille American Edition (EBAE) code will be changing beginning January 2016. Students across the United States will start learning Unified English Braille (UEB), a new code to facilitate braille compatibility with new and emerging literacy needs and current technology.

Spring 2017

  • Provide STAAR tests as per plan developed in 2016-2017 school year.
  • Continue data collection for research studies regarding the use of Nemeth Code.
  • Explore the addition of an innovative course in UEB Technical Code to TEA’s list of approved state elective course.

Fall 2016

  • Start teaching UEB at Texas Tech University.
  • Start teaching UEB to elementary students and older students who are new to braille.
  • Begin to collect data for research studies regarding the use of Nemeth Code vs. UEB Technical Code, focusing on Math and Science.
  • Make Braille TExES in UEB available and continue to offer Braille TExES in EBAE for two more years.
  • Facilitate the Braille Challenge in UEB format.

Summer 2016

  • Start teaching UEB at Stephen F. Austin State University.
  • Continue preparation for 2016-2017 UEB implementation for teaching students with visual impairments.
  • Continue the implementation of Nemeth Code training for transcribers and teachers of students with visual impairments.
  • Release plan for STAAR testing.

Spring 2016

  • Statewide celebration of National UEB implementation on Louis Braille’s birthday (January 4 th).
  • Continue preparation for 2016-2017 UEB implementation for students with visual impairments.
  • Continue the implementation of Nemeth Code training for transcribers and teachers of students with visual impairments.

Fall 2015

  • Continue to develop training plans for braille transcribers and teachers of students with visual impairments.
  • Implement Nemeth Code training for transcribers and teachers of students with visual impairments.
  • Develop a plan to transition STAAR to UEB code with TEA and test developer.
  • Send survey to braille transcribers to determine UEB knowledge and skills and level of certification.
  • Continue public relations regarding UEB with districts and ESCs.
  • Continue braille curriculum transition to UEB code.

Summer 2015

  • Plan training for braille transcribers and current teachers of students with visual impairments for 2015-2016 school year with ESCs and TSBVI.
  • Continue to develop Nemeth Code training plans for transcribers and teachers of students with visual impairments.
  • Continue to develop university UEB braille courses.
  • Add UEB code information to the 2015 Guidelines and Standards for Educating Students with Visual Impairments in Texas.
  • Begin transition of current braille curriculum (Braille FUNdamentals, APH programs) to UEB.

Spring 2015

  • Begin State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) transition development with TEA and the STAAR test developer.
  • Advertise National Braille Association training in April, 2015 in Austin, Texas.
  • Present UEB overview to conferences: Texas Council of Administrators of Special Education (TCASE), Deafblind Symposium, Low Incidence Disability (LID) network, and Texas Association of Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired (TAER).
  • Post Unified English Braille overview items on state and regional websites.
  • Continue to develop training plans for braille transcribers and teachers of students with visual impairments via ESCs and TSBVI.
  • Begin face-to-face and online trainings for braille transcribers and teachers of students with visual impairments.
  • Begin exposing teachers and students to UEB recreational readings.
  • Develop university UEB braille courses.
  • The decision to retain the Nemeth Braille Code for mathematics and science was made by the Braille Authority of North America (BANA) in November, 2012; BANA will provide provisional guidance on how to transcribe the Nemeth Code within UEB contexts.
  • Work with teacher certification test developer and TEA to plan UEB Braille TExES development timeline.
  • Plan the transition for state-adopted instructional materials to the UEB code with TEA Instructional Materials Division.
  • Provide public relations UEB awareness campaign with school district administrators.
  • Evaluate access to UEB via technology for students with visual impairments.
  • Facilitate the continued use of the Nemeth Code by creating a Nemeth Code Handbook.
  • Facilitate the continued use of the Nemeth Code by developing training plans for transcribers and teachers of students with visual impairments.

Fall 2014

  • Explore available options for training for braille transcribers and current teachers of students with visual impairments.
  • Develop resource document of available references on rules, resources, and training.
  • Advertise National Braille Association (NBA) training on April 16-18, 2015 in Austin Texas.
  • Develop UEB training plans for braille transcribers and teachers of students with visual impairments throughout the state in conjunction with Education Service Centers (ESC) and Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI).
  • The Texas Education Agency (TEA) will collaborate with the teacher certification test developer for transition to UEB on the Braille Texas Examinations of Educator Standards (TExES).
  • Explore opportunities for funding for teacher and transcriber attendance at the National Braille Association UEB training in April 2015 in Austin, Texas.

Compiled by Texas UEB Stakeholder Group - November 5, 2014; Revised August 20, 2015