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Wisconsin National Agenda

For the Education of Children and Youths with Visual Impairments,
Including Those with Multiple Disabilities

Wisconsin National Agenda
Families, Professionals and Community Working Together for Positive Change

The "Wisconsin National Agenda" is a statewide committee whose sole purpose is to improve services for students who are blind or visually impaired. The Wisconsin National Agenda is a subcommittee of the "National Agenda for the Education of Children and Youths with Visual Impairments, Including Those with Multiple Disabilities", a national project aimed at accomplishing goals to improve the quality of education for students who are visually impaired. The national project, which was started in 1993, encourages each state to organize itself into committees to carry out he goals of the National Agenda within their own state. In Wisconsin, a group of over 50 concerned parents, administrators, teachers, consumers and other interested parties are actively involved in committee work designed to accomplish the goals of this very important movement. They have worked to raise awareness of the needs of students with visual impairment and to effect change in our state to ensure quality services for these students and their families. Thousands of people around the state have received direct and ongoing information through mailings, conferences, brochures and inservices. The various projects of the Wisconsin National Agenda have been supported and sponsored by a collaboration of local education agencies, CESAs, private funding and state discretionary grants. Together we can make a difference!

Goals of the Wisconsin National Agenda

  1. Students and their families will be referred to an appropriate education program within 30 days of identification of a suspected visual, impairment.
  2. Policies and procedures will be implemented to ensure the right of all parents to full participation and equal partnership in the educational process.
  3. Universities, with a minimum of one full-time faculty member in the area of visual impairment, will prepare a sufficient number of educators of students with visual impairments to meet personnel needs throughout the country.
  4. Service providers will determine caseloads based on the needs of students and will require ongoing professional development for all teachers and orientation & mobility instructors.
  5. Local education programs will ensure that all students have access to a full array of placement options.
  6. Assessment of students will be conducted, in collaboration with parents, by personnel having expertise in the education of students with visual impairments.
  7. Access to developmental and educational services will include an assurance that instructional materials are available to students in the appropriate media and at the same time as their sighted peers.
  8. Educational and developmental goals, including instruction, will reflect the assessed needs of each student in all areas of academic and disability-specific core curricula.
  9. Transition services, will address each developmental and educational phase in order to assist students with visual impairments and their families in setting goals and implementing strategies through the life continuum.
  10. Local education agencies and CESAs will participate in a self-evaluation process designed specifically for vision programs to ensure that students who are blind or visually impaired will receive comprehensive, quality educational services.

While we, have accomplished much, there is much left to do. The work of the Wisconsin National Agenda Project is not done. We need your support and involvement in order to accomplish our goals. If you would like more information or would like to become more involved, please contact one of the persons listed below.

Mark Riccobono
Center Director Wisconsin Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired
1700 W. State Street Janesville, WI 53546-3599
Phone 800-832-9784

Samantha Hoffman
Educational Consultant for Students With Visual Impairment
Department of Public Instruction (DPI)
PO Box 125 Madison, WI 53707
Phone 608-266-3522

Lisa Tomberlin
National Agenda Committee
Waupun High School
801 E. Lincoln Street Waupun, WI 53963
Phone 920-324-5591, Ext. 2947

Additional copies of this brochure can be obtained by contacting:

Regional Support Specialists

Marilyn Rubio
414-546-3000, Ext. 453

WCBVI - Dan Wenzel

CESA 3, 4, 5:
648-742-8814, Ext. 225

CESA 6, 7:
Norm Hanson

CESA 8, 9:
Kay Glodowski
715-453-2141, Ext. 244

CESA 10, 11, 12:
Penne Freyberger
715-986-2020, Ext. 2135

Braille copies of this document may obtained from the Wisconsin Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired Phone 800-832-9784 Please feel free to photocopy this document as the need arises.