The mission of NMSBVI is to provide support to New Mexico’s students who are blind or visually impaired so that every day, every student has all that they need to be successful and to live the dreams they identify for themselves. Although many of these students will not set foot on one of the school’s campuses in the course of their education, each student, their family and their goals are intensely important to NMSBVI.
In order to create the network of support that is necessary to ensure this success, NMSBVI continues to engage stakeholders in partnerships that will enhance learning at every level. The school’s Family Infant Toddler program is known nationally as a statewide model of excellence that provides home based support to any young child in New Mexico who has a visual impairment. The Albuquerque campus’ (ECP) staff are actively engaged in early childhood research and programming and the residential campus and ECP are lab schools, frequently visited by personnel prep programs from educators, therapists and pediatricians. In addition to its traditional programming, the school provides mentorship support and educational scholarships to district teachers who desire to become highly qualified teachers of the visually impaired or orientation and mobility instructors. Funding to NMSU supports two professors’ salaries so that the graduate level program continues in New Mexico. A low vision clinic, instructional resources center and technology lending library all support New Mexico’s students.
More recent initiatives include a prison Braille project; NMSBVI staff travel four hours to a prison to teach Braille to inmates who hope to become Braille transcribers. The outcome? New Mexico students will have increased access to Braille materials and at no cost to them or to their districts. A research project with a UNM pediatric neurologist and the Mind Institute is looking at teaching strategies and the way young brains can change. A statewide database for blindness is currently under development. The ultimate goal: every child, every day getting what they need.
NMSBVI is engaged with system change as well as with teacher learning and, most importantly, with the growth and development of every child in New Mexico. We are making differences every single day. Changing what it means to be blind is everyone’s work. We hope you will join us!
-Linda Lyle, Superintendent
Donations to the Superintendent’s Fund allow NMSBVI to fund much needed programs and initiatives as the needs arise.