ADE Director's Communication Memo Form

Memo Number : LS-07-107

Date Created : 04/02/2007


Co-op Directors
other: All Principals
LEA Supervisors
EC Coordinators

Type of Memo: Administrative
Response Required: Yes
Section:   Learning Services - Dr. Laura Bednar, Assistant Commissioner
Special Ed Programs: Annual Federal Deafblind Census

Regulatory Authority:
IDEA, 20 U.S.C.A., Sections 1400 et seq.

Contact Person:
Ms. Susie Branon

Phone Number:


The Arkansas Department of Education (ADE), Special Education Project for Children with Deafblindness, is preparing the annual federal census of Arkansas children from birth to age 21 identified as deafblind. The Project is required to submit an annual report to the U. S. Department of Education on the children identified as deafblind in the State of Arkansas. The purpose of this Commissioner’s Memo is to assist in the identification of deafblind children in Arkansas for purposes of the annual report.

The Project is a federal grant administered through the ADE, Special Education that provides technical assistance to educators and agency personnel serving children identified as deafblind and to the families of the children. On-site consultation, technical assistance, and a quarterly newsletter are available to the teachers of students identified as deafblind. Parents of identified children are eligible to participate in parent activities sponsored by the Project, as well as, to receive mail-outs, newsletters, and other forms of technical assistance.

Attached is a "National Census Information Form" to use to refer or identify children eligible for follow-up by the Project. It has been simplified as much as possible, and includes all the information required by the U.S. Department of Education for the annual Deafblind Census. (**See Note)

Children referred to the Project do not have to be totally deaf and totally blind, nor do the children have to have been identified as deafblind on the December 1 Child Count in order to meet the eligibility requirements of the Project. The children must, however, have both vision and hearing impairments to some degree, or have cognitive impairments that limit the use of both vision and hearing. (The definition of deafblindness is included on the last page of the attached "National Census Information Form.")

Please consider all the children being served to determine who might qualify for follow-up by the Project, and complete a "National Census Information Form" on each child considered eligible. Again, a child did not have to be counted as deafblind on the December 1 Child Count to be eligible for follow-up by the Project. Often the children are counted on the December 1 Child Count as having Mental Retardation, Multiple Disabilities, or Other Health Impairments. If unsure about a child’s eligibility, please complete a "National Census Information Form" to refer the child to the Project. Project staff will make the final determination of eligibility on all children referred.

Please return the completed form(s) no later than April 23, 2007, to the address indicated below. The return address is also listed on the last page of the National Census Information Form. Questions may be directed to Susie Branon at the ADE.

Return completed form(s) by April 23, 2007, to:

Attention: Beth Bourgeois
Arkansas Project for Children with Deafblindness
Arkansas Department of Education, Special Education
1401 West Capitol Avenue, Suite 450
Little Rock, AR 72201

**Note: If children residing in the district have already been identified as deafblind by the Project, the district will receive a separate letter from the Project identifying the children. A “National Census Information Update Form” will be enclosed with the letter, with instructions for providing updated information on the identified children.


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