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AFB JOURNAL OVISUAL
IMPAIRMENT& BLINDNESS
  
Expanding possibilities for people with vision loss  
 

May 2010 • Volume 104 Number 5

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Editor's Page

Print edition page number(s) 259-259

When I was an employee of a school for students who are blind, I closely followed the workings of the Council of Schools for the Blind (COSB). This group of residential school leaders impressed me over the years with their ability as a leadership organization to set national agendas and to generate awareness on topics of interest and importance to their members. In addition to the sharing of ideas and support this group offers to its members, of special interest to me over the years has been Howe's Now, the wonderful quarterly newsletter that is produced by COSB. Knowing how challenging it is to produce high-quality written materials and to meet publication deadlines, I have always been impressed with the excellent information included in Howe's Now.

Once again, COSB has assumed a leadership role by stepping up to support an entity of importance to the leadership of COSB and its members. I am pleased to announce that COSB has given JVIB a very generous donation in support of the ongoing publication of the journal. Through this sponsoring partnership, COSB has affirmed the importance of an archive of information and research that current professionals and future generations can use to expand their knowledge and the quality of their programs. On behalf of the editors of JVIB and you, the journal's readers, I thank the membership of COSB for acknowledging the significance of JVIB in spite of these tough economic times.

As part of COSB's sponsoring partnership, the journal has given the council a platform from which to share its message--information of the same quality that appears in Howe's Now--with a larger audience, the readership of the journal. This month's issue features the first of three installments of COSB Commentary. Each column will be written by a member of COSB who will discuss important topics that they feel the field of visual impairment and blindness needs to address. In the inaugural column of COSB Commentary, Stuart Wittenstein describes the rationale for COSB's support of JVIB, discusses the closing of the Oregon School for the Blind, and the joint response to the closing by COSB and the Conference of Educational Administrators of Schools and Programs for the Deaf (CEASD). When a school for the blind is closed, everyone in the field has cause for concern. This column describes the actions taken by COSB in response to the sad news of the demise of the Oregon School for the Blind.

This May issue also features articles and reports on an array of topics, and I am confident every reader will find something of interest in its pages. The lead article, by O'Farrell, Lewis, McKenzie, and Jones, offers a review of the literature on Charles Bonnet syndrome. This syndrome commonly occurs in adults with macular degeneration and involves visual hallucinations.

In this age of evidence-based assessment and instruction, it is critical that educators and administrators have tools that measure the performance of students. Hansen, Shute, and Landau examined the usability of an assessment-for-learning system that provides audio-tactile graphics for algebra content (geometric sequences) for individuals with visual impairments.

In addition, Pizzo and Bruce share their experiences with language and play in students with multiple disabilities or deaf-blindness. Capella McDonnall analyzes a large database, increasing our understanding of the employment of transition-age youth. She found a high percentage of youths with visual impairment are employed upon leaving high school, but few are working consistently. Kasten, Haschke, Meinhold, and Oertel-Verweyen describe a computer program that is useful for training eccentric viewing. The issue concludes with an analysis of gender differences in the risk of falls by Ray and Wolf.

With such a diverse lineup, I know each reader will find something they can apply to their work or that raises their consciousness. Enjoy!

Duane R. Geruschat , Ph.D.
Editor in Chief


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