Visual Services clients to welcome Assistive Tech Lab guests at May 5 open house

Woman looks at large text on a handheld device

TULSA, Okla. – Tulsa resident Felicia Jones is ready to testify about the transforming power of assistive technology at the open house for Visual Services’ new Assistive Technology Lab on May 5.

“They are going to see how far technology has come -- what people can do with technology on their jobs,” Harris explained. “For companies, you may find out how to use technology to hire a great person who is visually impaired to work for you one day.”

Students with disabilities challenge themselves and each other in technology based competition

Tech-Now logo

OKLAHOMA CITY ─ Oklahoma students with disabilities will battle it out in the Tech-Now State Competition from 9 am to 3 pm on May 4 at Norman North High School, 1809 Stubbeman Ave., Norman.

Of the 350 students enrolled the Tech-Now classes, approximately 200 students from 20 high schools across the state are expected compete.

Sapulpa Public Library, School for the Blind teams earn trophies at Creek County Literacy Program’s Spelling Bee

Three young women and one adult

MUSKOGEE, Okla. – Correctly spelling tough words, such as lassitude and lascivious, earned Oklahoma School for the Blind competitors a first place schools trophy at the 19th Annual Creek County Literacy Program’s Spelling Bee.
The competition was held at Sapulpa High School on Thursday, April 13.

OSB teacher Faye Miller coached the successful OSB Braille Bees, composed of Richelle Zampella, Kaylee Ragon and Brianna Brennan, to victory in the first round against five other public schools.

School for the Deaf team headed to national competition April 22-25 at Gallaudet University

Six young people and two adults wearing Battle of the Boos tshirts

SULPHUR, Okla. – One of two Oklahoma School for the Deaf’s teams is headed to Washington, DC April 22 through 25 to compete in playoffs at Gallaudet University’s Battle of the Books. Both teams advanced to the playoff level following preliminary competition.

Only 16 teams among the 84 that competed will make it to Battle of the books national competition. Gallaudet will pay all expenses for those student competitors and sponsors.

Oklahoma School for the Blind awards regional Braille Challenge® prizes

Left photo: young woman wears medal around her neck. Right photo: Young woman with hands on shoulders of young boy wearing medal and holding two boxes

MUSKOGEE, Okla. –– Oklahoma School for the Blind awarded top prizes to Braille Challenge® winners at the regional competition held at the school campus in Muskogee.

Braille Challenge® is a national program sponsored by the Braille Institute, a nonprofit organization that eliminates barriers caused by blindness and severe sight loss.

Hunter Kelley was the overall winner in the freshman and apprentice categories.

Richelle Zampella earned top honors as the overall winner in the varsity and sophomore competition.

School for the Blind dedicates sensory garden April 21 to education champion Ray Kirk

Man baits a fishing hook for a small boy

OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma School for the Blind students, faculty and friends will dedicate the Ray Kirk Memorial Sensory Garden at 1 p.m. on Friday, April 21.

Elada Kirk, Ray Kirk’s widow, will be an honored guest at the dedication.

The public is welcome to attend the ceremony on the school campus at 3300 Gibson Street in Muskogee.

Oklahoma School for the Deaf competes at Gallaudet University national competition

4 young people hold certificates and silver trophies.

SULPHUR, Okla. – Oklahoma School for the Deaf’s Academic Team competed April 1-3 at Gallaudet University’s national Academic Bowl for Deaf and hard of hearing high school students in Washington, DC.

The OSD team was one of 20 in the U.S. that won the right to advance to the national competition.

Gallaudet University oversees the competition and is the world leader in liberal arts education and career development for deaf and hard of hearing students.

Each year, the University hosts four regional competitions for up to 80 teams.

Oklahoma City firms honored at People with Disabilities Awareness Day at state Capitol

Gov. Mary Fallin speaking to crowd

Two Oklahoma City firms were honored March 28 with the 2016 Employment Partner of the Year award during the People with Disabilities Awareness Day event at the Oklahoma state Capitol.

Dale Rogers Training Center and the Federal Aviation Administration Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center were chosen by Vocational Rehabilitation staff of the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services to receive the honor.

Hundreds expected at 2017 People with Disabilities Awareness Day

Bud Averyt will be at Awarenss Day

Chelsea’s Albert “Bud” Averyt will be among hundreds of Oklahomans with Disabilities and their supporters who will share their personal stories with state lawmakers during People with Disabilities Awareness Day 2017 set for March 28 at the Oklahoma state Capitol.

Early registration for the event ends Friday. To register, go to www.okdrs.org/pwdad-registration and complete the form. Those who do not register can still do so at the event.

Budget woes delay DRS’ employment services to new applicants

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services established a waiting list, effective March 13 at 5 p.m., that affects new applicants for vocational rehabilitation and employment services. Services will now be delayed to a group of applicants with the most severe disabilities.

DRS’ Vocational Rehabilitation and Visual Services’ divisions were previously forced to set up waiting lists for two less severely disabled groups of applicants on January 9 due to rising expenditures in case services and reductions in state-appropriated funds.

Pages