Assistive Technology

 Assistive Technology provides devices or services that allow students with disabilities to access information, education or activities that students without disabilities can freely access. It is our District’s aim to ensure that there is universal access for any student, including those with learning disabilities, to be able to access any curriculum that the District offers.

Mark Stephens manages the Assistive Technology program throughout our District. Mark earned a Certificate in Advanced Professional Development with Distinction in Assistive Technology from California State University, Northridge in June, 2003. With AT leaders from around the State, he serves on an Advisory panel for the Oregon Technology Access Program. Mark is also Speech Pathologist at Marshfield.

Mark has developed a set of protocols and procedures for systematically evaluating and planning the implementation of assistive technology for students. The District’s Assistive Technology Program is supplemented by the support we get from service specialists at the South Coast Education Service District, and through the technology lending library (Oregon Technology Access Program) at the Douglas ESD.

There are some students in our Special Education program who do not respond adequately to the tried-and-true methods used by our Special Educators in overcoming certain learning disabilities. Assistive Technology can often times be the solution. Some examples of assistive technology devices:

  • For those who find it difficult to handwrite, an electronic AlphaSmart keyboard may make it easier for the student to express their thoughts (includes spell check and word prediction capabilities).
  • Speech recognition software can also help those who have difficulties writing, but can verbalize information adequately.
  • Text-to-speech software for those with difficulties reading
  • Personal digital assistants (PDA’s) enable learning disabled students to download assignments and documents needed for class work
  • IPADS, IPODS, Netbooks etc.
  • Pencil grips, slant boards
  • SMART Pens provide students with indexable  audio recordings that match their notes
  • Classroom amplification systems in all classrooms grades K-7, and selected classrooms 8-12th grade

 

 

The field of Assistive Technology is constantly changing- there are new ideas, devices and software to improve students’ ability to successfully complete their education. Our District is striving to stay current with these changes to provide the best possible education for students with disabilities.

Assistive Technology: Step-By-Step Guide
Assistive Technology Flowchart

Resources


Coos Bay Public Schools

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