Teacher Training Programs and Policies in Developed Countries
Several countries and professional organizations already have standards for preparing teachers of students with visual impairments. When a country has the resources and infrastructure to develop degree programs for training teachers, we suggest consulting these websites.
The Rehabilitation Council of India (www.rehabcouncil.nic.in) is the Statutory Body for developing curricula for training of teachers, granting recognition to the training institutes and Universities that wish to run such training courses, and enrolling Special Educators on the Register for Rehabilitation Professionals. In India, it is mandatory for all training institutes, colleges and Universities to run only recognized courses, provide degrees with standard nomenclature, and to seek RCI approval before starting such training. The RCI has also introduced the system of running “Continuing Rehabilitation Education” courses for upgrading knowledge of special educators and other rehabilitation professionals. Some useful sites for training teachers of students with visual impairments in India are:
THE INTERNATIONAL AGENCY FOR THE PREVENTION OF BLINDNESS
Each state in the United States adopts its own standards for preparing teachers, and most of those can be accessed through the state’s department of education and/or teacher licensing websites. Texas (below) is one such example. In addition, two professional organizations, the Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired and the Council for Exceptional Children, have developed their own standards. There is remarkable similarity among all of these standards.
Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired (AER)
AER’s University Review Program evaluates universities on how well it addresses professional preparation standards for orientation and mobility specialists, teachers, and vision rehabilitation specialists:
Council for Exceptional Children
The Council for Exceptional Children is the largest organization of special educators in the United States. Its teacher standards are the foundation of university accreditation.
Perkins School for the Blind
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