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2006 OSEP Project Directors' Conference Washington, DC Kathleen Mary Huebner, Ph. D. Professor & Associate Dean Pennsylvania College of Optometry Director,

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Presentation on theme: "2006 OSEP Project Directors' Conference Washington, DC Kathleen Mary Huebner, Ph. D. Professor & Associate Dean Pennsylvania College of Optometry Director,"— Presentation transcript:

1 2006 OSEP Project Directors' Conference Washington, DC Kathleen Mary Huebner, Ph. D. Professor & Associate Dean Pennsylvania College of Optometry Director, National Center for Leadership in Visual Impairment Perspectives and Challenges in Training Personnel to Serve Low Incidence Populations: Blindness & Visual Impairment

2 Outline of Presentation Incidence – “The Count” Personnel Crisis – Teachers-O&M-Leadership Complexity & Personnel Preparation Shortage Teacher & O&M Preparation & Job Requirements Additional Challenges Personnel Production PCO & Other Master’s Degree & Certificate Program Strategies Leadership Preparation Challenges and NCLVI

3 Incidence of Visual Impairment 1 in 500 children has a visual impairment serious enough to be classified as partially sighted 1 in 1000 can be classified as legally blind IDEA -.05% of school-age population served as visually impaired

4 Magnitude of the Inaccurate Count (NCLID)

5 The Problem-Personnel Shortage Crisis Based on a recommended 8::1 student-teacher ratio 11,700 teachers + 11,700 O&M specialists needed by 2010 (Mason, Davidson & McNerney, 2000) Annually producing approximately 200 teachers and 90 O&M specialists (http://nclid.unco.edu/newnclid/multiYrSum.php?itemid=613&blogid=131) 14 Active VI Doctoral Programs in US (Ferrell, 2004) Annually producing on average 4 doctorates (http://nclid.unco.edu/newnclid/multiYrSum.php?itemid=613&blogid=131)http://nclid.unco.edu/newnclid/multiYrSum.php?itemid=613&blogid= Leaders with Doctorates needed in next 5 years (Huebner & Wormsley, 2005)

6 New Specialists Per State, Teachers 2.6 O&M Instructors.4 Dual-certified Teachers/O&M.8 Deafblind Teachers (http://nclid.unco.edu/newnclid/state php?itemid=616&blogid=132)

7 Teacher preparation involves: Expanded Core Curriculum (ECC) 1. Compensatory Skills, braille, communication modes, etc., 2. Orientation & Mobility 3. Social Interaction Skills 4. Independent Living Skills 5. Recreation and Leisure Skills 6. Career Education 7. Use of Assistive Technology 8. Visual Efficiency Skills 9. Self-Determination (Huebner, Merk-Adam, Stryker, & Wolffe, 2004)

8 Teacher +O&M preparation & work involves: CEC or ACVREP Competencies More credit hours Fieldwork/Practicum & Internships Addressing needs of 0-21 year old diverse & heterogeneous population of students including those with multiple disabilities No two alike Teaching in all types of settings from inclusion public schools, agencies, organizations, private schools, special schools, resource rooms, homebound, itinerant, teacher consultant, private contract, & most often supervised by non-blindness professionals

9 Some Additional Challenges Increased demands on teachers, O&M Specialists, & Leadership personnel Multi-competency programs take more knowledge, skill & time Research based practices are hard to come by and document Funding is not keeping up with increased tuition & other costs Blind & VI children are “devalued” by society & ed. systems Online programs still a “new teaching and learning” experience Fewer full-time students (or more full-time employed & often already employed in jobs for which they are being trained) Implications of “highly qualified” Recruitment & retention into personnel preparation & jobs

10 University Programs in Blindness States with University programs in TSVI (n = 15) States with university programs in both TSVI and O&M (n = 11) States in the Northeast Regional Center for Vision Education (n = 6)

11 All Personnel Types

12 New Completers (NCLID)

13 PCO Strategies – Master and Certificate Programs Collaboration Partnerships Quality-Programs & Staff Adherence & beyond to required competencies Flexibility Multiple funding sources Development & production of CDs On-campus & on-line programs; all on-line programs require some face-to-face classes Full complement of VI Programs, TVI, O&M, VRT, & LVR promotes degree with multiple certificates

14 Other Strategies Being Used New England Regional Approach-  The Northeast Regional Center for Vision Education (NERVE) Distant education using various strategies; on-line, satellite programs; weekend classes; video; CD ROM; video conferencing, teleconferencing, etc. National Center for Low-Incidence Disabilities (NCLID)- Data collection and sharing; repository for course materials that can be shared by IHE’s; Information exchange, knowledge advancement, etc.

15 1. Develop the Collaborative Model 2. Facilitate Preparation of Leadership Personnel 3. Enrich the Preparation of Leadership Personnel 4. Evaluate NCLVI-Program and Mode 5. Disseminate Information about NCLVI Model 5 Objectives

16 NCLVI Collaborating ComponentsUniversityConsortiumNCLVIFellows PCOOSEP PublicAdvisoryCouncil

17 All 14 University Consortium Members with VI Doctoral Programs NCLVI Cohort Group of 21

18 Collaboration at Graduate and Post- Graduate Levels Promotes Healthy competition vs. cannibalism Sharing of resources—human, financial, & other Building a community of practice within & beyond the IHEs Better use of federal dollars Greater opportunity for state participation in needs assessment, recruitment, program content, & financial support One person programs become multi-site, multi-delivery programs increasing learning opportunities for students Decrease competition – increase professional partnerships Stronger programs, easy access to variety of human resources with wide range of expertise Increased likelihood of joint research/national research efforts Possibly more teachers with higher quality outcomes

19 For further information: Kathleen Mary Huebner, Ph. D. Professor & Associate Dean Graduate Studies in Vision Impairment PA College of Optometry 8360 Old York Road Elkins Park, PA National Center for Leadership in Visual Impairment or


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