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State offers monthly training for blind, visually impaired


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO-AM) – The South Dakota Rehabilitation Center for the Blind will begin hosting a series of monthly training sessions focusing on assistive technology for people who are blind or visually impaired.


The first session will provide an introduction to assistive technology and will be held Saturday, May 10, at 9 a.m. CDT at 2900 W. 11th St., Suite 101, Sioux Falls, S.D. The Rehabilitation Center is part of the S.D. Department of Human Services (DHS), Division of Service to the Blind and Visually Impaired.


“If you are experiencing vision loss and can’t read your computer screen, stop to see the latest assistive technology available,” DHS Secretary Gloria Pearson said of the May 10 training. “During this presentation, you will learn about the various types of hardware or software that can allow you to use your devices again.”


Training sessions will cover a variety of technology each month, including the following:

  • Introduction to types of assistive technology and free resources
  • Jaws speech program and ZoomText program/keyboard
  • OpenBook/PEARL camera and Victor Reader
  • Kurzweil 1000/HoverCam T5 and Kurzweil 3000
  • Transformer, Merlin Pro and Genie Pro
  • Mac computer with VoiceOver/Zoom
  • iPad and iPhone with VoiceOver/Zoom
  • BrailleNote and BraillePen


Instruction is available to anyone with a visual impairment, but individuals must have some computer knowledge to participate. Students should have access to the equipment of the subject area being taught (for example: If the topic involves an iPad, a student should have an iPad prior to attending the class).


Class sizes are limited, and registration is required at least one week prior to the class date (May 2 is deadline for initial May 10 session). Individual appointments will also be available with the assistive technology instructor the first Friday of each month between 1 and 3 p.m. To register for a class, set up an appointment with an instructor or learn more, call (605) 367-5260 or (800) 658-5441 toll-free.


About DHS

The South Dakota Department of Human Services’ mission is to enhance the quality of life of people with disabilities, in partnership with its stakeholders, through the programs and services offered by its divisions. Learn more by visiting the department’s website, dhs.sd.gov, and viewing the DHS Strategic Plan.


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