Technology has become an important part of literacy for our students at the New York Institute for Special Education. Every student is provided with a personal iPad that he or she can use at school.
The school supports curricula goals and IEPs with subscriptions to online, server-based, age appropriate software and websites.
In the Schermerhorn Program for students with visual impairments and blindness, students are provided with special technology for the creation of print materials through the use of adapted CCTVs, hand magnifiers and high contrast materials. Many students use specially designed portable computers such as Humanware’s Braillenote for notetaking and as an accessible personal digital assistant device.
There are two computer labs fully adapted for all of our school-aged students. Every computer has magnification software for low vision users and speech access software for students with blindness. Every classroom has similar computers for students and teachers to use everyday.
Braille literacy is something we take very seriously and we provide our students with Braille textbooks and teacher generated Braille materials as needed. We have succeeded in making it possible for a student or teacher to produce a document in Braille format as in print.
The teachers in our Van Cleve Program for students with learning and emotional disabilities have intense iPad training and are able to access to specific applications to help to facilitate learning for an individual child or an entire class or department. Our iP
ads are controlled and monitored by the IT department for application distribution, updating and appropriate usage. The department has access to the Lexia Reading Core5 which is part of Apple's featured Core Curriculum Content for iPad.
All Schermerhorn and Van Cleve students have access to a school monitored email account and when age appropriate, memberships with Bookshare and Learning Ally for downloading digital audio and Braille books.
The children in our Readiness Program for pre-school students with development delays use their iPads to access special curriculum applications and software. Every teacher has gone through a training program to learn how to make the best
use of the iPads for their students. Teachers have access to Boardmaker and use the Breakthrough through Literacy curriculum.