Using Quality Indicators to Improve Service Delivery for Assistive Technology Services in Educational Settings While many state and local educational agencies have been providing various kinds of assistive technology to improve students’ with disabilities access to educational programs for several years, the mandate coming from the federal government is now much clearer than ever. As specified in the 1997 reauthorization, the Individuals with Disabilities ... Article
Article  |   November 01, 2002
Using Quality Indicators to Improve Service Delivery for Assistive Technology Services in Educational Settings
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Susan R. McCloskey
    Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network, King of Prussia, PA
  • Joy Smiley Zabala
    Assistive Technology and Leadership, Lake Jackson, TX
Article Information
Augmentative & Alternative Communication / School-Based Settings / Professional Issues & Training / Articles
Article   |   November 01, 2002
Using Quality Indicators to Improve Service Delivery for Assistive Technology Services in Educational Settings
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, November 2002, Vol. 11, 3-6. doi:10.1044/aac11.3.3
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, November 2002, Vol. 11, 3-6. doi:10.1044/aac11.3.3
While many state and local educational agencies have been providing various kinds of assistive technology to improve students’ with disabilities access to educational programs for several years, the mandate coming from the federal government is now much clearer than ever. As specified in the 1997 reauthorization, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (PL 105–17) mandates that committees that plan individualized education programs (IEPs) consider the assistive technology (AT) needs of all students with disabilities to determine whether or not AT is required in order to obtain a free and appropriate public education and to meet the student’s educational objectives (Lahm & Sizemore, 2002). The required process of consideration at the IEP meeting will likely take a variety of forms. It may also increase the frequency of assessment inquiries and questions about how such a need is determined. The procedures and practices used by a school district to determine whether or not a student with disabilities requires assistive technology devices and services is receiving renewed focus. Unfortunately, members of students’ IEP teams often feel unprepared to implement the intent of the statute without support from others, such as designated AT specialists. Assistive technology service delivery involves complex issues, the commitment of time and effort by informed and collaborative team members, and a clear understanding of what assistive technology devices and services are and what they are supposed to do for a student.
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