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NLS: That All May Read

Braille Summit: June 19-21, 2013

NLS invites you to participate in the NLS Braille Summit at Perkins School for the Blind in Watertown, Massachusetts, June 19−21, 2013, to help determine the best ways for libraries to promote and support braille literacy. The conference will bring together librarians, braille literacy professionals, braille readers, and other stakeholders.

Braille is the only true form of literacy for people who are blind. It increases access to education, allows for fuller participation in society, and drastically increases the odds of employment. Yet studies suggest that less than 10 percent of people who are legally blind in the United States can read braille, and many children who are blind have no opportunity to learn it. As leading providers of braille reading materials, libraries are poised to play a key role in the fight to reverse this trend. NLS is committed to increasing braille literacy as part of its strategic plan.

The conference will allow participants to gather lessons learned from across America and around the world; assess the present state of braille literacy, technology, and access; and make recommendations that will shape braille programs and priorities for the future of the NLS network of cooperating libraries.

The conference will cover five major themes: Braille Readers, Library Selection and Collection Development, Braille Production, Braille Technology, and Promoting Braille Literacy and Awareness. Participants will have the opportunity to listen to expert speakers in each subject area and then engage in facilitated discussions with their peers, during which they will identify strategic issues and recommend solutions for implementation. We hope that you will join us to lend your own knowledge and experience.

For those not able to attend, there will be a number of ways to participate through social media and more traditional channels.

The audio and video of the panel presentations will be streamed over the Internet. The web address for the live stream will be www.perkins.org/braillesummit Link outside of Library of Congress.. The conference will be streamed during the following hours:

Wednesday, June 19, 2013
1:00–3:00 p.m.
3:15–4:15 p.m.
Thursday, June 20, 2013
8:30–9:45 a.m.
11:10 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
2:45–4:10 p.m.
Friday, June 21, 2013
8:30–10:00 a.m.
2:45–4:30 p.m.

The conference e-mail address is braillesummit@gmail.com. This address will be monitored before and during the conference. Questions and comments received through this means will be incorporated into the discussion as time permits.

Social media for this event will be handled primarily through Twitter. Follow @BrailleSummit for information and for links to event photos posted on Twitpic. Retweeting and sharing to other social media venues is encouraged. The event hashtag is #NLSBRAILLE.

Final agenda

Conference Information

The Crowne Plaza Boston-Newton has been selected as the host hotel and is offering a rate of $159 per night. Attendees are responsible for handling their own lodging and transportation expenses. NLS will provide breakfast and lunch, as well as transportation from the host hotel to the conference facility.

Conference location:

Name of facility: Perkins School for the Blind
Grousbeck Center for Students and Technology
GPS Address: 55 Beechwood Avenue
Watertown, MA 02472
617-972-7557

Telephone number: (617) 924-3434

Conference hotel:

Name: Crowne Plaza Boston - Newton
Address: 320 Washington Street
City: Newton
State: MA
Zip Code: 02458
Telephone #: (617) 969-3010
Fax: (617) 630-2977

(Transportation between hotel and conference will be provided)

Conference will provide:

Continental breakfasts (Thursday and Friday)
Lunches (Wednesday for tour participants, Thursday, Friday)
Snacks (Wednesday, Thursday and Friday)
Reception (Wednesday evening)

Reference the “Perkins - National Library Service Braille Summit” in order to receive the discounted rate of $159.00, plus 11.7% tax per night. Please mention discount code PLS at registration.

Book online at: http://www.ichotelsgroup.com/crowneplaza/hotels/us/en/newton/bosaa/hoteldetail

Book toll free by phone at: 866-257-7857.

Registration is closed.

Questions? E-mail Steve Prine or Judy Dixon, conference coordinators.

For more information contact:

Judith Dixon
Consumer Relations Officer
jdix@loc.gov