Assistive Technology

Assistive Technology

The Monroe County Intermediate School District (MCISD) recognizes that assistive technology can eliminate barriers and enable students with impairments to be participating and contributing members of society.

We believe that all students with impairments in Monroe County are entitled to equal access to the technology needed to ensure appropriate educational opportunities.

What is Assistive Technology?

Assistive technology (AT) device means any item, piece of equipment, or product system, whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of a child with a disability. The term does not include a medical device that is surgically implanted, or the replacement of such device.

Decision Making

Assistive Technology Guidelines

The Guidelines for the Provision of Quality Assistive Technology Services: A Plan for Region IV serves as the framework for districts, counties, and schools to use as they develop and refine their Assistive Technology Service.  The plan reflects No Child Left Behind and IDEA 2004. In addition, it incorporates the principles of Universal Design for Learning and integrates Quality Indicators for Assist

PDF DocumentAT Consideration Process Guide

External LinkAssistive Technology Staff Forms (sign-in page)

Assistive Technology Procedures

  1. Complete AT Consideration Process Guide  with the IEP team to decide if AT is required. Review the consideration outcomes and decide whether or not assistive technology is required.
  2. If potential assistive technology solutions are not known to the IEP team, the IEP team may contact the assistive technology consultant/committee who can assist the team in addressing assistive technology or refer the student for an assistive technology evaluation. A trial use period may be recommended at the end of the consultation or evaluation. To contact the assistive technology consultant, complete the Consultation Request Form.
  3. If potential assistive technology solutions are known to the IEP team, trial use of the identified assistive technology solution may be documented in the IEP and implemented. To complete a trial of assistive technology, complete the Assistive Technology Trial Request Form.

  4. If you’ve determined that the student accomplishes the required tasks within the relevant instructional or access areas with assistive technology that has been determined educationally necessary and is currently in place, then document required assistive technology devices and services in the IEP.  Complete and/or update the Assistive Technology Plan.

AT Tools/Resources

Find self-paced learning tutorials, hands-on activities, how-to videos, and resources to build technology skills including free learning modules and professional development courses.  Learn about a variety of topics that promote best practices. For more information on assistive technology tutorials, augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) apps and software, core vocabulary resources/activities, switch access, and visual impairment apps and software, visit Resources and Information.

Lending Library

The Instructional Resource and Technology Center (IRTC) has a lending library of materials available to students attending schools within Monroe County. The IRTC loans both low-tech and high-tech devices in the following categories:

Communication

Computer Access

Daily Living Aids

Hearing & Listening Aids

Learning

Software

Switches

Vision Aids

Assistive Technology equipment can be checked out after completing the AT Consideration Process Guide.

Professional Learning

AT Journey: Web Edition

Self-paced | Online

This journey is designed for individuals and school teams to learn more about assistive technology while examining their current practices. The journey will assist you with:

  • Beginning to develop a successful, team-based model to effectively deliver AT services to their students

  • Understanding and navigating the intersection of AT, Ed Tech, IT (information technology) and UDL (universal design for learning)

  • Promoting a learning, sharing, and capacity-building community by eliminating information silos.

You’ll be able to go at your own pace. Each step will contain videos, resources, and helpful hints to help your team move toward a collaborative AT process and ultimately get the appropriate assistive technology (AT) into the hands of students in a more efficient and effective manner. 

Cost: Free

Presenter: Carolyn O'Hearn and Mike Marotta

Level: Beginner

 

Promoting Access, Engagement and Learning Success for Students with Severe Disabilities

October 7, 2020 | 11:00 AM CST | 60 minutes

Educators frequently struggle how best to meet the significant and complex needs of students with severe and multiple disabilities. This webinar session will present techniques and tools (applying Universal Design for Learning Principles) to transform the instructional content, delivery and the student response mode to help students attain meaningful academic and functional life skills.

Get guidance on how to minimize the impact of the barriers imposed by communication, cognition, motor and behavioral difficulties and maximize desirable learning outcomes with appropriate student-specific techniques, tools, and assistive technology. Engage and enable the learner in accessing the curriculum and make progress and develop increased competence towards independence.

Cost: Free

Presenter: Padmaja Sarathy, MA, Author & Educational Consultant

Level: Beginner

 

Administrators as Allies in Improving AT Services-Part 1

November 3, 2020 | 12:00 PM CST | 60 minutes

Frustrated with your AT services? Looking for ways to work smarter, not harder? This two-part series is designed for AT service providers who wish to change or improve the AT services in their agency. Powerful, significant changes can be accomplished when AT service providers work collaboratively with their administrators, including special education directors and building principals. Specific actions for creating effective, long lasting change will be identified with practical suggestions from AT service providers for implementing them.

Powerful and significant changes can be accomplished when AT service providers work collaboratively with their administrators, including special education directors and building principals. Specific actions for creating effective, long lasting change will be identified with practical suggestions addressing change. Part one of this two-part series offers an overview of four essential areas where assigned leaders of AT programs can support AT service providers to change or improve the AT services in their agency. The webinar presented by Gayl Bowser and Penny Reed will include a cameo appearance from AT specialists who have used this information in their Midwest school district.

Cost: Free

Presenter: Gayl Bowser, M.S. and Penny Reed, Ph.D.

Level: Intermediate

 

Administrators as Allies in Improving AT Services-Part 2

November 17, 2020 | 12:00 PM CST | 60 minutes

Frustrated with your AT services? Looking for ways to work smarter, not harder? This two-part series is designed for AT service providers who wish to change or improve the AT services in their agency. Powerful, significant changes can be accomplished when AT service providers work collaboratively with their administrators, including special education directors and building principals. Specific actions for creating effective, long lasting change will be identified with practical suggestions from AT service providers for implementing them.

In Session 2 of our Administrators as Allies webinars, Maggie Judson and Jeanna Antrim will join Penny Reed and Gayl Bowser to share specifics about their work to build capacity and develop independence for AT in their school district.  Using the framework of Leadership, Management, Supervision, and Advocacy & Program Improvement, they will share their process, specific activities, and resources that have helped them in their efforts to create a new, capacity building approach to AT services in their agency.

Cost: Free

Presenter: Jeanna Antrim, M.S., CCC-SLP and Maggie Judson, M.S. CCC-SLP, ATP

Level: Intermediate

 

Starting Over: Case Study Illustrating Positioning, Access, and AT Applications With a Young Adult

 

December 8, 2020 | 11:00 AM CST | 60 minutes

In this webinar, we will explore an in-depth case study of a young adult. This young man was successful in using a speech generating device and power wheelchair in the past, but that was several years ago. Re-evaluation and on-going intervention were needed to provide a re-start and restore functional communication and mobility.

Cost: Free

Presenter: Michelle L. Lange, OTR/L, ABDA, ATP/SMS

Level: Beginner/Intermediate

 

Time for a Change: Case Study Illustrating a Complex Child Who Has Plateaued in AT Use

December 15, 2020 | 11:00 AM CST | 60 minutes

This case study features a child who has significant visual and cognitive impairments as well as significant sensory needs. This webinar will explore how her team successfully moved her from perseverative switch activations to functional switch use for communication.

Cost: Free

Presenter: Michelle L. Lange, OTR/L, ABDA, ATP/SMS

Level: Beginner/Intermediate