Don Johnston, Incorporated, the assistive technology developer of the Read:OutLoud eBook and Internet reader, announced today that the Virginia Accessible Instructional Materials Center (AIM-VA), at George Mason University, has renewed its statewide Read:OutLoud 6.x software license indefinitely for all Local Education Agencies in Virginia.
The statewide AIM-VA program has served thousands of students with print, physical and learning challenges. These students receive K-12 textbooks and instructional materials in accessible file formats as required by IDEA 2004 (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act). AIM-VA is part of the Helen A. Kellar Institute for Human disabilities, (KIHd) and works with Local Education Agencies to provide curriculum materials in digital or alternative file formats and guidance on technology accommodations.
“Extending our license beyond an annual subscription demonstrates our commitment to provide widespread access to instructional materials through our Central Offices,” said Michael Behrmann, GMU Professor of Special Education and Director of KIHd. “Students who use the e-book reader have more opportunities to study in the least restrictive learning environments and attend general education classes.”
Read:OutLoud automatically opens and reads eBook formats such as NIMAS, PDF, DAISY, HTML and Bookshare files. Students can see and/or hear text read aloud in a multi-sensory learning environment, which can benefit students with print disabilities and students who struggle with reading comprehension. The eReader software has an accessible web browser for online research and embedded reading comprehension templates based on strategies from the National Reading Panel and Reading Next Report. Students also enjoy various homework study tools including highlighters, a talking dictionary, a bibliography tool and an outline sidebar for collecting facts and organizing information for essay writing and studying.
John Eisenberg, Director of the Office of Instructional Support and Related Services for the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) said, “AIM-VA’s decision to upgrade the statewide license helps to ensure that our schools receive uninterrupted and timely access to the technology. Our students will continue to receive accessible instructional materials at the start of school with unlimited access to the assistive technology at school and at home. The AIM-VA statewide program provides more advantages for students to study grade-level curriculum and increase their overall academic achievement for lifelong learning.”
About Read:OutLoud Version 6.0.3 and Accessible Instructional Materials (AIM).
Learn more about all of Don Johnston’s reading products.
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About George Mason University, Helen A. Kellar Institute for Human disabilities
The Helen A. Kellar Institute for Human disabilities is an interdisciplinary campus-based organization focusing on improving the lives and productivity for persons with disabilities. As one of the oldest and leading assistive technology programs in the U.S., KIHd combines the resources of George Mason University with local, state, regional, national, public and private agencies to develop products, services and programs for citizens and students. http://kihd.gmu.edu/aim.
About the VDOE, Special Education Office of Instructional Support and Related Services
The Office of Instructional Support and Related Services (ISRS) provides leadership and technical assistance to programs in support of children with low-incidence disabilities: children with autism spectrum disorders; children with intellectual disabilities; children with severe disabilities; children who are deaf/hard of hearing, children who are blind/visually impaired; children who are deaf-blind and children with traumatic brain injury. This Office also provides leadership to support parent involvement initiatives and oversees related services and assistive technology initiatives including the National Instructional Materials Accessibility Standards (NIMAS) and the Accessible Instructional Materials Center of Virginia (AIM-VA).
About Don Johnston Incorporated
Don Johnston (www.donjohnston.com) develops accessible reading and writing technologies to support K-12 and postsecondary students with cognitive, physical, and learning disabilities. Since 1980, the special education company has partnered with literacy experts, AT specialists, SLPs, OTs, special education teachers, university researchers and DSS coordinators to improve access to learning and to increase reading and writing independence. Students and individuals with dyslexia, autism, dysgraphia, down-syndrome and diverse learning challenges will benefit from software and hardware devices that accommodate their learning needs in schools, the workforce and at home. Find us on Twitter and Facebook.