APH Press Release

Awards Celebration to Cap day of Fierce Competition among State’s Braille Readers, Ages 6-19

Louisville, KY (February 15, 2016) – The American Printing House for the Blind (APH) is partnering with the Kentucky School for the Blind (KSB), to host the 2016 Kentucky Braille Challenge on Thursday, February 18, 2016 from 10 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. This is the sixth year for Kentucky participation in this national effort to encourage braille proficiency. Forty students from across Kentucky are expected to participate. The competition includes braille writing speed and accuracy, reading speed and comprehension, spelling, proofreading, and interpreting tactile graphics.

Braille Challenge contestant Calli Larison posing with a Braille Challenge Poster

The Braille Challenge was created by the Braille Institute of America, located in Los Angeles, California, to encourage and enrich the reading and writing of braille (skills that are necessary for future academic and employment success). The two-stage competition is open to students ages 6-19. In the first stage, students compete in one of many regional events scheduled for the U. S. and Canada this year. After that, the top students with the highest scores, overall, will be invited to compete in the Final Challenge which will be held in Los Angeles in June 2016. Last year Calli Larison, a second grader from Campbell County, represented Kentucky in the national competition. (See photograph)

Schedule for February 18

About the Braille Challenge and the Braille Institute of America

The 2016 Braille Challenge® is the only national reading and writing contest in braille for legally blind students ages six to 19. In Its 16th year, it is designed to motivate students by emphasizing their study of braille while rewarding their success with fun-filled, challenging local and national events. Any student who is blind or visually impaired and reads braille is eligible to participate in preliminary or regional Braille Challenge events held from January through mid-March throughout the U.S. and Canada.

“Braille reading proficiency provides an essential skill set that allows children who are blind or visually impaired to compete with their sighted peers in a school environment as well as later in life as they enter the workforce,” said Peter Mindnich, President, Braille Institute. “We are inspired by the passion and commitment of the students who compete in The Braille Challenge. Their achievements can empower others who are affected by sight loss to develop their braille skills as well.” Visit http://www.brailleinstitute.org/ to learn about other programs at Braille Institute.

About the Kentucky School for the Blind

The Kentucky School for the Blind is the statewide educational resource center on blindness and provides quality educational services to Kentucky students who are blind and visually impaired, birth to age 21. For more information, visit http://www.ksb.k12.ky.us/

About the American Printing House for the Blind

The American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is the world’s largest company devoted solely to researching, developing, and manufacturing products for people who are blind or visually impaired. Founded in 1858, it is the oldest organization of its kind in the United States. Under the 1879 federal Act to Promote the Education of the Blind, APH is the official supplier of educational materials for visually impaired students in the U.S. who are working at less than college level. APH manufactures textbooks and magazines in braille, large print, recorded, and digital formats. APH also manufactures hundreds of educational, recreational, and daily living products.

The American Printing House for the Blind, Inc. is located at 1839 Frankfort Avenue in Louisville, Kentucky. For more information, call (502) 895-2405 or log on to www.aph.org

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