RE: A Arizona Schools for the Deaf and Blind Advisory Council

Year: 
2014
Resolution Number: 
2014-01

RESOLUTION 2014-01
RE: A Arizona Schools for the Deaf and Blind Advisory Council

WHEREAS, The Arizona Schools for the Deaf and Blind (ASDB) was first established in 1912 to provide education for students with sensory impairments such as blindness or deafness; and

WHEREAS, Arizona Revised Statute A.R.S ยง 15-1325 requires the superintendent, as well as all management and supervisory staff, to be competent educators of the deaf or the blind and to be acquainted with school management and class instruction of the deaf or the blind; and

WHEREAS, earlier this year, S.B. 1393 was introduced in the Arizona Senate and would have allowed the ASDB Board of Directors (Board) to appoint a superintendent for each school and makes other ASDB personnel changes; and

WHEREAS, S.B. 1393 would also have eliminated the requirement that the superintendent, as well as all management and supervisory staff to be competent educators of the deaf and the blind; and

WHEREAS, while The Arizona Schools for the Deaf and Blind is a state agency reporting to the governor, the are first and foremost specialized schools with a statutory obligation to educate sensory impaired children anywhere in Arizona. If passed, SB 1393 would have given the board of trustees the ability to choose unqualified persons who lack the necessary credentials, background and experience the responsibility for educating students with sensory disabilities; and

WHEREAS, youth with sensory disabilities need specialized education and interventions in order to access the mainstream educational environments, but also to acquire social skills and independent living skills; and

WHEREAS, the superintendent is charged with developing and implementing the strategies necessary to ensure youth with sensory disabilities receive the specialized education and interventions they need. This task is impossible to attain if the superintendent lacks the requisite experience in specialized education; and

WHEREAS, the superintendent takes direction from the board and is responsible for applying that direction in a specialized educational environment. Again, without the requisite experience in specialized education for individuals with sensory disabilities it will be impossible for the superintendent to complete this task; and

WHEREAS, the present, and interim superintendent, was appointed even though he lacked the requirements specified by Arizona Revised Statute: NOW, THEREFORE,

BE IT RESOLVED by the National Federation of the Blind of Arizona in Convention assembled this fourteenth day of September, 2014, in the City of Tempe, Arizona, that this organization urge the governor of Arizona to appoint an advisory council comprised of stake-holders from the blind and deaf communities to determine the specific qualifications for the superintendent, management and other supervisory staff at The Arizona Schools for the Deaf and Blind.

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