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Winter 2008 Table of Contents
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Bookshare.Org News Update

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Abstract: announces a five-year award that allows them to supply high quality textbooks and educational materials to students with special needs.

Key words: Blindness, visual impairment,, Benetech, literacy, IDEA, print disability.

Created in 2002 by the nonprofit organization Benetech, is a subscription-based service used by nearly 6,000 U.S. residents. gives print disabled people in the United States legal access to over 35,000 books and 150 periodicals that are converted to Braille, large print or text to speech audio files. announces:

Were happy to share incredible news, which will transform On Friday, the Office of Special Education Programs of the U.S. federal Department of Education made a major five-year award of $32 million to This will further the objectives of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), by supplying high quality textbooks and educational materials to students with special needs.

This funding is to fully support all schools and students with qualifying print disabilities in the United States. It applies to all students, of any age, in K-12 or beyond. We will provide these students with access to the entire collection of accessible electronic books and to software for reading those books. As of October 1, 2007, we have ceased charging these schools and students anything to join We also expect to add over 100,000 new educational titles in high quality DAISY and Braille formats over the next five years, getting students the high quality textbooks they need for academic success. is delighted to announce the opening of to international users with qualifying print disabilities. We have an expanding number of books where we have received generous permission from publishers and authors to make their works available globally. We suggest you check out the books we have available globally, as explained on our International Searching page.

If you are someone who cant read a printed book, or know a person who has difficulty reading printed text, the community is here to serve you.