Bookshare.org and Don Johnston will provide qualified print disabled students with a free text reader to access electronic books from the Bookshare.org library.
This technology access partnership will serve an estimated 1-3% of the total K-12 student population, specifically those who receive special education services and qualify under the 1996 Chafee Amendment.
Beginning at the start of the 2008-09 school year, qualified students will have the opportunity to use Don Johnston's Read:OutLoud Bookshare.org Edition text reader (Windows Version) to access more than 36,000 books, magazines and newspapers in the Bookshare.org library.
The Read:OutLoud Bookshare.org Edition text reader offers embedded reading comprehension strategies and instructional supports that align with state educational standards. The text reader software includes audio feedback, electronic highlighting and note-taking features that allow students to effectively capture ideas. A Mac version will follow in 2009.
The goal of this partnership is to help eliminate barriers for print disabled students and provide the tools needed to ensure access to educational texts. Bookshare.org offers digital books produced from the National Instructional Materials Accessibility Standard (NIMAS) and delivers them to students in the BRF Braille file format and the Digital Accessible Information System (DAISY) standard for Digital Talking Books. Don Johnston's Read:OutLoud Bookshare Edition text reader gives students better access to books and effective reading instruction through a direct connection to Bookshare.org's digital texts.