October is Blindness Awareness Month
Compared to those who can no longer see, people with functional vision often take for granted how easy it is to function in the world. Blind people face unique obstacles every day, and in recognition of their enduring spirit, October is Blindness Awareness Month. There are currently 180 million people worldwide who suffer from blindness or some sort of visual impairment.
The Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired (CBVI) will celebrate White Cane & Guide Dog Safety Day on Thursday, Oct. 15, 2015 to raise public awareness of these important mobility tools for people who are blind or visually impaired. In Ohio, and across the nation, the day celebrates the independence of people who are blind or visually impaired.
In 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson first proclaimed October 15th as “White Cane Safety Day.” The original purpose was a safety reminder to promote courtesy and special consideration to blind people who are navigating America’s streets and roadways. Since this first observance, White Cane Safety Day has taken on greater meaning as a time to celebrate the self-sufficiency of people who are blind or visually impaired and their right to participate fully in society.
Ohio’s White Cane Law states: “The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to any totally or partially blind pedestrian carrying a clearly visible white cane or accompanied by a guide dog and shall take such precautions as may be necessary to avoid injuring or endangering the pedestrian and, if necessary, shall stop the vehicle in order to prevent injury or danger to the pedestrian.”
We are already excitedly preparing for the Vision Program to take on new challenges. This is going to be another amazing year at Geauga County. We are evermore committed to providing the best education possible to our students. As we embark upon another school year, the staff and I are eager to continue to grow and learn as educators and to help your children develop the skills necessary to be a successful students. We continue to deepen our understanding of the Common Core State Standards, and the best practices in fostering a safe and inclusive learning environment. We are excited to be introducing new technology and new low vision products to the classroom. The staff and I look forward to sharing more information with you about the work we are doing over the course of the school year. As the vision team just recently went to an IPad training we are placing new technology in the classroom. Please look forward to new apps to teach children with visual impairments to come.