Alternate Format Services for Students with Print Disabilities

Manitoba Education and Training provides educational support services for Manitoba students with print disabilities (blind/visually impaired, physically disabled and learning disabled).

The supports are intended to provide these students with the resources that are required to allow them to participate in educational programs along with their sighted peers.

Books in Alternate Format On-Site Collection

(Audio, Braille, Large Print, Electronic Text)

The collection is mainly comprised of school texts, however many supplemental reading books are also available. When a requested text is not available from the on-site collection, Alternate Format Services will conduct a search and when a title is found make loan arrangements at other interlibrary loan sites across Canada and the United States. Books are loaned without charge for the entire school year and/or any portion thereof, to students attending schools in Manitoba.

Interlibrary Loan (ILL)

In order to provide access to a much larger number of alternate format book titles, Alternate Format Services utilizes the reciprocal loan services of many other collections across Canada and in the United States. Most of these specialized collections cannot be accessed by individual borrowers from out-of-province except through a request made on a student's behalf from his/her own provincial education resource centre.

Production of Alternate Format Materials

When alternate format texts that are requested cannot be located in the on-site collection or from the interlibrary loan contacts, Instructional Resources Unit (IRU) will consider production of the requested book. Depending upon the needs of the student and the nature of the material requested, IRU may produce the requested book in audio, Braille, large print, or electronic text format.

Special Learning Equipment (SLE)

Depending on availability, special learning equipment is loaned to students who are or who has a severe physical impairment who have been identified by a departmental consultant as requiring it. These items (e.g. braillers, CCTV's, computer access devices) provide access to educational technologies not normally available in the classroom or through any other source.

Services for Students Who are Blind or Visually Impaired

A team of Consultants for the Blinds/Visually Impaired provides support services on a province-wide basis to students who are blind or visually impaired.

The vision screening program is coordinated by the school divisions with support (training, equipment loans, and repairs and data collection) from Manitoba Education and Training. It is intended to identify, as early as possible, school age students who may have undetected vision difficulties.

Alternate Format Materials for Post-Secondary Students

Students who are registered as being visually impaired or who have certifiable disabilities which affect their ability to read print, and who attend Manitoba colleges or universities, have access to braille, large print, audio books or electronic textbooks.

Online Catalogue

Alternate Format Resources Catalogue is a listing of alternate format materials housed at 1181 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg. Alternate formats include braille, large print, audio books and electronic text and are designed to supplement or replace the regular print text. Materials are available only to eligible students.