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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 8. Education
Agency 20. State Board Of Education
Chapter 543. Regulations Governing the Review and Approval of Education Programs in Virginia
11/26/2020

8VAC20-543-470. Special education blindness/visual impairments preK-12.

The program in special education visual impairments preK-12 is designed to ensure through course work and field experiences in a variety of settings that the candidate has demonstrated the following competencies:

1. Understanding of the characteristics of individuals with disabilities, including:

a. Developmental and cognitive characteristics of children and youth with disabilities, particularly blindness or visual impairment;

b. Language development and the effects of blindness, visual impairment, and other disabling conditions and cultural and linguistic diversity on language development;

c. Characteristics of individuals with visual impairments, including impact of visual impairment on children's social and emotional development, and family interaction patterns; and

d. Understanding of psychosocial aspects of visual impairment and cultural identity.

2. Understanding of the foundation of the legal aspects associated with students with disabilities and students with visual impairments, including:

a. Legislative and judicial mandates related to education and special education;

b. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), § 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act;

c. Legal decisions related to persons with disabilities;

d. Current regulations and procedures governing special education, including individualized education program (IEP) development, individualized family service plan (IFSP), and transition services; and

e. Disciplinary practices, policies, and procedures and alternative placements or programs in schools.

3. Understanding of the foundation of assessment and evaluation with an emphasis on individuals with visual impairments, including:

a. Administering, scoring, and interpreting assessments, including norm-referenced, criterion-referenced, and curriculum-based individual and group assessments;

b. Administration and interpretation of a functional vision assessment (FVA), learning media assessment (LMA), and assistive technology assessment and assessment in the areas of the expanded core curriculum (ECC);

c. Interpreting assessments for eligibility, placement, and program decisions and to inform instruction;

d. Techniques to collect, record, and analyze information;

e. Diagnostic instruction using ongoing assessment data;

f. Techniques for recognizing capacity and diversity and its influence on student assessment and evaluation;

g. Using data from student program evaluation to inform curriculum development, instructional practice, and accommodations; and

h. Low vision practices and procedures, including assessment and instructional programming for functional vision.

4. Understanding of service delivery, classroom and behavior management, and instruction for students who are blind and visually impaired, including:

a. The application of current research and evidence-based practice;

b. Classroom organization and curriculum development;

c. Curriculum adaptations and accommodations;

d. The development of language and literacy skills;

e. The use of technology in teaching and instructing students to use assistive technologies to promote learning and provide access to the general education curriculum;

f. Classroom management, including behavior support systems and individual planning;

g. Methods and procedures for teaching students with visual impairments;

h. Instructional programming and modifications of curriculum to facilitate inclusion of students with blindness and visual impairment in programs and services with sighted and typically developing peers;

i. Individual and group behavior management techniques;

j. Career and vocational aspects of individuals with disabilities, including persons with visual impairments, including knowledge of careers, vocational opportunities, and transition from school to work; and

k. Social and recreational skills and resources for individuals with visual impairments, including methods and materials for assessing and teaching activities of daily living.

5. Understanding of consultation, case management, and collaboration including:

a. Coordinating service delivery with other professionals in collaborative work environments;

b. Training, managing, and monitoring paraprofessionals;

c. Involving families in the education of their children with blindness or visual impairment;

d. Implementation of collaborative models, including collaborative consultation, co-teaching, and student intervention teams; and

e. Interfacing with community agencies and resources.

6. Understanding of the foundations of Braille reading and writing, including:

a. Teaching reading and writing of uncontracted and contracted Unified English Braille on both a Braille writer and a "slate and stylus"; and

b. Knowledge of other codes, including Nemeth, foreign language code, and music code.

7. Understanding of anatomy, physiology, and diseases of the eye and the educational implications.

8. Understanding principles and how to instruct in human guide techniques and pre-cane orientation and mobility instruction.

9. Understanding of the standards of professionalism, including ethical and professional practice.

10. Completion of supervised classroom experiences at the elementary and secondary levels with students who have visual impairments, to include those with blindness and low vision, and with individuals who may have additional disabilities.

11. Understanding of and proficiency in grammar, usage, and mechanics and their integration in writing.

12. Understanding of and proficiency in pedagogy to incorporate writing as an instructional and assessment tool for candidates to generate, gather, plan, organize, and present ideas in writing to communicate for a variety of purposes.

Statutory Authority

§§ 22.1-16 and 22.1-298.2 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 34, Issue 24, eff. August 23, 2018.

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