Assistive technology includes both devices and services.
Assistive technology devices include any item, piece of equipment, or product system, whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of a child with a disability.
Assistive technology services include any service that directly assists a child with a disability in the selection, acquisition, or use of an assistive technology device. The term includes:
- The evaluation of the needs of a child with a disability, including a functional evaluation of the child in his/her customary environment.
- Purchasing, leasing or otherwise providing for the acquisition of assistive technology devices for children with disabilities.
- Selecting, designing, fitting, customizing, adapting, applying, maintaining, repairing, or replacement of assistive technology devices.
- Coordinating and using other therapies, interventions, or services with assistive technology devices, such as those associated with existing education and rehabilitation and programs.
- Training or technical assistance for a child with a disability or, if appropriate, the child's family.
- Training or technical assistance for professionals, including individuals providing educational and rehabilitative services, employers or other individuals who provide services to, employ, or are otherwise involved in the major life functions of children with disabilities.
A Full and Individual Evaluation (FIE) reports address the student's need for assistive technology. Should a specific evaluation be needed to determine a specific need for assistive technology services or devices, the ARD Committee should conduct a Review of Existing Evaluation Data (REED) and request an assistive technology evaluation.
In the Southeast Texas Cooperative for Special Services, a team of professionals which may include a diagnostician, a speech language pathologist, an occupational therapist, and/or a special education teacher conduct all assistive technology evaluations and monitor the student use of assistive technology.