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NIMAS Regulations PowerPoint Presentation

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Complete Transcript of the NIMAS Regulations PowerPoint Presentation

AFB Solutions Forum Meeting

Louisville, Kentucky

October 11, 2006


National Instructional Materials Accessibility Standard

  • Defined in IDEA, Section 674(e)(3)(B)
    The standard established by the Secretary to be used in the preparation of electronic files suitable and used solely for efficient conversion into specialized formats.
  • The final standard was published on July 19, 2006 (stated effective date of August 18, 2006, although some confusion on this point).
  • For those of you who are techies, the details of the standard are available online at nimas.cast.org.
  • NIMAS is essentially DAISY/NISO Z39.86 2005 standard.

NIMAS Regulations

  • Final regulations were published on August 14, 2006.
  • Four key changes to Section 300.172 (Access to Instructional Materials) from the initial publication of the proposed rules:

    1. To make clear that States must adopt the National Instructional Materials Accessibility Standard (NIMAS), published as Appendix C to part 300 of these final regulations;

    2. To establish a definition of "timely manner," for purposes of § 300.172(b)(2) and (b)(3) if the State is not coordinating with the National Instructional Materials Access Center (NIMAC), or § 300.172(b)(3) and (c)(2) if the State is coordinating with the NIMAC;

    3. To add a new § 300.172(b)(4) to require SEAs to ensure that all public agencies take all reasonable steps to provide instructional materials in accessible formats to children with disabilities who need those instructional materials at the same time as other children receive instructional materials; and

    4. To add a new § 300.172(e)(2) to clarify, that all definitions in § 300.172(e)(1) apply to each State and LEA, whether or not the State or LEA chooses to coordinate with the NIMAC.


Establishes Definitions

  • The definitions apply to each State and local educational agency (LEA), whether or not the State or LEA chooses to coordinate with the National Instructional Materials Access Center (NIMAC).
  • "NIMAS" has the meaning given that term in section 674(e)(3)(B) of the Act (NIMAS means the standard established by the Secretary to be used in the preparation of electronic files suitable and used solely for efficient conversion into specialized formats).
    [34 CFR 300.172(a)(1)(iii)] [20 U.S.C. 1474(e)(3)(B)]
  • "Specialized formats" has the meaning given that term in section 674(e)(3)(D) of the Act ("Specialized formats" means Braille, audio, or digital text which is exclusively for use by blind or other persons with disabilities; and with respect to print instructional materials, includes large print formats when such materials are distributed exclusively for use by blind or other persons with disabilities).
    [34 CFR 300.172(e)(1)(iv)] [20 U.S.C. 1474(e)(3)(D); 17 U.S.C. 121(d)(3)]

Definitions (cont'd.)

"NIMAC" means the center established in section 674(e) of the Act, through the American Printing House for the Blind (APH), not later than one year after the date of enactment of IDEA. NIMAC's duties are:

  • To receive and maintain a catalog of print instructional materials prepared in the NIMAS, as established by the Secretary, made available to such center by the textbook publishing industry, State educational agencies (SEAs), and LEAs.
  • To provide access to print instructional materials, including textbooks, in accessible media, free of charge, to blind or other persons with print disabilities in elementary schools and secondary schools, in accordance with such terms and procedures as the NIMAC may prescribe.
  • To develop, adopt and publish procedures to protect against copyright infringement, with respect to the print instructional materials provided in sections 612(a)(23) and 613(a)(6) of the Act.

[34 CFR 300.172(e)(1)(ii)] [20 U.S.C. 1474(e)(2)(A), (B), (C)]


Definitions (cont'd.)

"Print Instructional Materials" is defined as printed textbooks and related printed core materials that are written and published primarily for use in elementary school and secondary school instruction and are required by a SEA or LEA for use by students in the classroom.

[20 U.S.C. 1474(e)(3)(C)]

No further guidance given in the regulations, thus the NIMAS Development Committee, in Consultation with the AAP and AEP is considering the following definitions:

  • "Textbooks" are printed books written and published to serve as the principal instructional materials resource for use by students in the classroom to meet the curriculum requirements for the intended course.
  • "Related core materials" are printed materials, other than textbooks, designed for use by students in the classroom in conjunction with a textbook and which, together with the textbook, are necessary to meet the curriculum requirements for the intended course. The materials should be directly related to the textbook and wherever possible they should be published by the publisher of the textbook. Related core materials do not include materials that are not written and published primarily for use by students in the classroom (e.g., newspapers, reference works, and trade books) nor materials that are not necessary to meet the curriculum requirements for the intended course (e.g., ancillary or supplemental materials).

Definitions (cont'd)

  • "Blind persons or other persons with print disabilities" means children served under Part 300 who may qualify to receive books and other publications produced in specialized formats in accordance with the Act entitled "An Act to Provide Books for the Adult Blind,"approved March 3, 1931, 2 U.S.C. 135a.
    [34 CFR 300.172(e)(1)(i)] [20 U.S.C. 1474(e)(3)(A)]
  • The Library of Congress regulations (36 CFR 701.6(b)(1)) related to the Act to Provide Books for the Adult Blind provide that "blind persons or other persons with print disabilities" include:
    • (i) Blind persons whose visual acuity, as determined by competent authority, is 20/200 or less in the better eye with correcting glasses, or whose widest diameter if visual field subtends an angular distance no greater than 20 degrees.
    • (ii) Persons whose visual disability, with correction and regardless of optical measurement, is certified by competent authority as preventing the reading of standard printed material.
    • (iii) Persons certified by competent authority as unable to read or unable to use standard printed material as a result of physical limitations.
    • (iv) Persons certified by competent authority as having a reading disability resulting from organic dysfunction and of sufficient severity to prevent their reading printed material in a normal manner.
      • "Competent authority" is defined in 36 CFR 701.6(b)(2) as follows:

        # (i) In cases of blindness, visual disability, or physical limitations: doctors of medicine, doctors of osteopathy, ophthalmologists, optometrists, registered nurses, therapists, professional staff of hospitals, institutions, and public or welfare agencies (e.g., social workers, case workers, counselors, rehabilitation teachers, and superintendents).
        # (ii) In the case of a reading disability from organic dysfunction: doctors of medicine who may consult with colleagues in associated disciplines.

Requires Adoption of NIMAS

  • States must adopt the NIMAS, published as appendix C to Part 300, for the purposes of providing instructional materials to blind persons or other persons with print disabilities, in a timely manner after publication of the NIMAS in the Federal Register on July 19, 2006 (71 FR 41084); and
  • Establish a State definition of "timely manner" for purposes of 34 CFR 300.172 (b)(2) and (b)(3) if the State is not coordinating with the NIMAC or 34 CFR 300.172 (b)(3) and (c)(2) if the State is coordinating with the NIMAC.
    [34 CFR 300.172(a)] [20 U.S.C. 1412(a)(23)(A)]
  • The Regulations do not define "Adopt" or "Timely Manner." Many commenters requested definitions for both of these terms. The Department declined to choose a specific date for adoption, stating that it believes that States should make every effort to adopt the NIMAS in a timely manner following the publication of the NIMAS in the Federal Register, recognizing that the timelines and requirements for adopting new rules, policies, or procedures vary from State to State. Because states choosing to coordinate with the NIMAC must, consistent with section 612(a)(23)(C) of the Act and § 300.172(c) of these regulations, begin implementing these provisions not later than December 3, 2006, the Department expects that these States would have adopted the NIMAS by December 3, 2006. The Department also declined to include a definition of "adopt" in these regulations because requirements for adopting new rules and policies may vary from State to State. The Department's view is that it is inherent in the adoption requirement that, at a minimum, upon "adoption" of the NIMAS, a State must accept and use electronic copies of instructional materials in the NIMAS format for the purpose of providing instructional materials to blind or other persons with print disabilities. Under § 300.172(a), adopting the NIMAS is a State responsibility and does not impose any legal obligations on publishers of instructional materials.

Establishes SEA Rights and Responsibilities

  • Nothing in 34 CFR 300.172 shall be construed to require any SEA to coordinate with the NIMAC. If an SEA chooses not to coordinate with the NIMAC, the SEA must provide an assurance to the Secretary that it will provide instructional materials to blind persons or other persons with print disabilities in a timely manner.
  • Nothing in this section relieves an SEA of its responsibility to ensure that children with disabilities who need instructional materials in accessible formats, but are not included under the definition of blind or other persons with print disabilities in 34 CFR 300.172(e)(1)(i) or who need materials that cannot be produced from NIMAS files, receive those instructional materials in a timely manner.
  • In order to meet its responsibility under paragraphs 34 CFR 300.172 (b)(2), (b)(3), and (c) to ensure that children with disabilities who need instructional materials in accessible formats are provided those materials in a timely manner, the SEA must ensure that all public agencies take all reasonable steps to provide instructional materials in accessible formats to children with disabilities who need those instructional materials at the same time as other children receive instructional materials.
    [34 CFR 300.172(b)] [20 U.S.C. 1412(a)(23)(B)]

Requirements for the Preparation and Delivery of Files

  • If an SEA chooses to coordinate with the NIMAC, as of December 3, 2006, the SEA must:
    • As part of any print instructional materials adoption process, procurement contract, or other practice or instrument used for purchase of print instructional materials, enter into a written contract with the publisher of the print instructional materials to:
      • Require the publisher to prepare and, on or before delivery of the print instructional materials, provide to NIMAC electronic files containing the contents of the print instructional materials using the NIMAS; or
      • Purchase instructional materials from the publisher that are produced in, or may be rendered in, specialized formats.
  • Provide instructional materials to blind persons or other persons with print disabilities in a timely manner.
    [34 CFR 300.172(c)] [20 U.S.C. 1412(a)(23)(C)]

Requirements for the Preparation and Delivery of Files (cont'd.)

"Timely Manner"

  • Many requested to define as providing these materials at the same time they are provided to children without disabilities, or at the start of the school year or, for children who transfer schools after the start of the school year, within 30 days of the start of the school year, regardless of whether a State chooses to coordinate with the NIMAC.
  • The Department declined to adopt such a definition stating that it may not be possible in all circumstances, for example, when a child with a disability transfers to a new school in the middle of a school year. Additionally, there could be circumstances beyond the control of the public agency that could prevent children with disabilities who need instructional materials in accessible formats from receiving them at the same time as instructional materials are provided to other children, such as if the public agency's contractor is unable to produce the instructional materials in an accessible format because of some unforeseen circumstance.
  • Instead, the Department added a new paragraph § 300.172(b)(4) requiring the SEA to ensure that all public agencies take all reasonable steps to provide instructional materials in accessible formats to children with disabilities who need those instructional materials at the same time as other children receive instructional materials.

Requires Collaboration with State AT Programs

  • In carrying out this section, the SEA, to the maximum extent possible, must work collaboratively with the State agency responsible for assistive technology programs.
    [34 CFR 300.172(d)] [20 U.S.C. 1412(a)(23)(D)]

Establishes LEA's Responsibilities

  • Not later than December 3, 2006, an LEA that chooses to coordinate with the NIMAC, when purchasing print instructional materials, must acquire those instructional materials in the same manner, and subject to the same conditions as an SEA under 34 CFR 300.172.
  • Nothing in this section shall be construed to require an LEA to coordinate with the NIMAC.
  • If an LEA chooses not to coordinate with the NIMAC, the LEA must provide an assurance to the SEA that the LEA will provide instructional materials to blind persons or other persons with print disabilities in a timely manner.
  • Nothing in this section relieves an LEA of its responsibility to ensure that children with disabilities who need instructional materials in accessible formats but are not included under the definition of blind or other persons with print disabilities in 34 CFR 300.172(e)(1)(i) or who need materials that cannot be produced from NIMAS files, receive those instructional materials in a timely manner.
    [34 CFR 300.210] [20 U.S.C. 1413(a)(6)(E)]

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