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(1) No licensed or classified employee of a school district, cooperative, or any contracted service provider shall be assigned to provide instruction of Braille to a student or produce Braille materials who has not demonstrated competency in "contracted" (grade two) standard literary Braille code by: 

(a) successful completion of a program, for teaching visually impaired students, from an approved educator preparation program as defined in ARM 10.57.102 

(b) successful completion of the National Certification in Unified English Braille Test and maintenance of that certificate;

(c) successful completion of the Unified English Braille Exam (Washington State School for the Blind) and ongoing maintenance; or

(d) successful completion of the Literary Braille Transcribing Course available through the National Federation of the Blind.

(2) The employing agency (school district and/or cooperative) is responsible for:

(a)  monitoring appropriate assignment of personnel under (1);

(b) assuring personnel working towards certification are making adequate gains in their coursework; and

(c) assuring maintenance of certification.

(3) Any person under (1) shall have two years, from the date that the individual has been initially assigned to provide instruction in Braille or to produce Braille materials, to successfully pass the testing requirements.

(4) A person who has met the requirements of (1) shall maintain their facility with "contracted" (grade two) standard literary Braille code through continuing education opportunities. 

(5) For the purposes of (4), an approved provider of continuing education may include any entity approved by the Montana Office of Public Instruction and/or the Montana Board of Education.

(6) Individuals who seek to remain eligible to work with visually impaired students are responsible for documenting completion of continuing education. Such individuals will provide a copy of their documentation to their employing school district.

(7) If a paraprofessional, who has not successfully met the requirements found in (1), is assigned to work with a student who has a visual impairment, the paraprofessional will be supervised by the designated special education teacher in collaboration with a teacher of the visually impaired who holds a credential from an approved educator preparation program as defined in ARM 10.57.102. In addition, the assigned paraprofessional and the school district shall meet the requirements contained in (1) within two years of the date a student with a visual impairment has been identified as in need of Braille instruction and/or materials.


History: Mont. Const. Art. X, sec. 9, 20-2-114, 20-2-121, 20-7-101, MCA; IMP, Mont. Const. Art. X, sec. 9, 20-2-121, 20-3-106, 20-7-101, 20-7-475, MCA; NEW, 2007 MAR p. 188, Eff. 2/9/07; AMD, 2012 MAR p. 2042, Eff. 7/1/13; AMD, 2023 MAR p. 255, Eff. 7/1/23.

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