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Procedures



Registration

Patron Eligibility 

Georgia public and charter school employees serving print impaired students are eligible for GIMC patron accounts. Parents or guardians of home school students, and representatives from private schools serving blind students are also eligible for patron account. Complete the required information on the “Request account or update existing accounts" form found on the Educators Information and Account Login tab of the GIMC website.

Patron Accounts

A new account will be established, and the District Administrators will be notified once the registration request has been received for public and charter school requests (Public accounts). All other accounts (home and private schools) are conditional to students being registered in the current Federal Fiscal Year of the American Printing House's annual census. Public accounts will remain active under the discretion of local school administrators and the GIMC. Home and private school accounts will be accessed each year during the annual census. All district special education directors and vision coordinators are assigned administrative patron accounts. Regional, district and local teachers are assigned sub-administrator rolls unless approved by district level administrators. Public accounts have no administrative rights assigned to accounts.

Administrators

·       Assign and remove sub-administrators

·       Register new students and edit existing student records

·       Order instructional materials

Sub-administrators

·       Register new students and edit existing student records

·       Order instructional materials

Non-administrative accounts

·       Order APH instructional materials

Note: The GIMC registration and ordering system provides access to protected student data. Patrons providing educational services to particular students have access to those student records.

As a condition of use, each user must agree to comply with the Family Educational Rights and privacy Act (FERPA) policies before access is granted. By proceeding to the GIMC ordering database you are agreeing to protect student education records and abide by FERPA's regulations. It is the local district's responsibility to ensure all employees accessing the system are fully trained on FERPA.

Student Eligibility 

Students are eligible to receive services from the GIMC under the definition of beneficiary P.L. 115-261. Qualifying students must be certified by competent authorities defined in the National Library Service Regulation 36 CFR 701.10.

GIMC

An eligible student is one who:

a)    is blind;

b)    has a visual impairment or a perceptual or reading disability which cannot be improved to give visual function substantially equivalent to that of a person who has no such impairment or disability and so is unable to read printed works to substantially the same degree as a person without an impairment or disability;  or

c)     is otherwise unable, through physical disability, to hold or manipulate a book or to focus or move the eyes to the extent that would be normally acceptable for reading, regardless of any other disabilities.

Those that meet the above criteria must be certified as print disabled by a competent authority. A doctor-of-medicine alone or in conjunction with other health professions is the only competent authority who can certify a person with a reading disability that is not visual or physical in nature until the following regulation is changed.

The following list are the professions listed under the National Library Service Regulation 36 CFR 701.10 as competent to certify students eligible of a print-based disability.

·       doctor-of-medicine

·       doctor of osteopathy

·       ophthalmologists

·       optometrists

·       registered nurses

·       therapists

·       professional staff of hospitals, institutions, and public or welfare agencies (e.g., social workers, case workers, counselors, rehabilitation teachers, and superintendents)

·       professional librarians or by any persons whose competence under specific circumstances is acceptable to the Library of Congress if none of the above are available

NOTE: Local Districts are responsible to keep student records related to eligibility. Local procedures must be in place to assure compliance with the eligibility requirements of students. Failure to maintain records or to acquire accessible materials for students who are not qualified to receive them is illegal.

APH Eligibility

GIMC registered students who meet eligibility criteria are enrolled with APH. Eligible students are those who;

a)     meet the definition of blindness: a visual acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye with correcting glasses, or the visual field is no greater than 20 degrees or function at the Definition of Blindness: visual performance reduced by brain injury or dysfunction when visual function meets the definition of blindness as determined by an eye care specialist or neurologist
b)     are enrolled in a formally organized public or private, nonprofit educational program of less than college level. (School-aged students must be enrolled with the registering school or agency on the first Monday in January.)
c)      have a consent to release personally identifying information on file at the GIMC.
Note: Students who are eligible for vision services and have eye reports that indicate a condition of either blind or functioning at the definition of blindness will not be dropped from the APH annual registration for eye reports that exceed a three year date. Students who in the past had been dropped due to non-current eye reports will need an eye report later than the date than when they were excluded from APH registration.

Students' APH registration information must be updated each year beginning the first Monday in January. Patrons must log into the GIMC Datalnx system to update the students' records and have until February 15th to update their student records.

Ordering Materials

Materials are purchased by the GIMC utilizing two funding sources, IDEA and APH annual quota funds. IDEA fun ds are used to purchase braille or large print textbooks for students with Individual Education Programs (IEPs). APH annual quota funds can only be spent for students who are counted in the annual APH census the January preceding the upcoming fiscal year. Items that have been previously acquired from these funding sources but are not in use will be issued to students who otherwise would not qualify for new material purchase using either funding source.

Materials (books and equipment) purchased remain the property of the GIMC and must be returned when no longer needed by the students for who they are requested or transferred through proper procedures. See transfer of materials.

Students Eligibility for Materials by Type of Written Plan and APH Registration​​​
Material TypeIEPIEP and APH504504 and APH
Textbook purchaseEENEAPH sourced
Stocked TextbooksEEEE
Equipment PurchaseNEENEE
Stocked EquipmentEEEE
SuppliesNEENEE
Table 1. This table shows the materials that each certified print-impaired student is eligible to receive based on the funding source used to purchase the materials. E = Eligible and NE = Not Eligible ​ ​ ​ ​

Creating an Order

All orders and special requests are submitted through the GIMC ordering and student registration secure portal (Datalnx). A direct link to Datalnx is provided on the GIMC Educators page and should be used each time to access the system. Do not create a direct link to the ordering system.

To search the for materials patrons must use the following protocol.

·       Textbooks: Search by ISBN.

NOTE: If a national version is listed it is compatible with the GA edition. Order the national version.

·       Supplemental Text: Search by Book Title NOT ISBN

These books are required curriculum related reading, e.g., novels or short stories from a reading list, practice tests, etc.

·       Equipment and Supplies: Search by APH catalog number.

NOTE: District-level approval is required for some APH item orders. Decision guides to obtain district approval are available on the GIMC Educators page. Additionally, some equipment items are only available for a 6-week short-term evaluation loan.

The GIMC will order supplies and equipment (items under quota funds) from the American Printing House for the Blind for students who are registered with APH. Any supplies and/or equipment that has been previously ordered and is available can be issued to nonregistered students on a first come first serve basis. No equipment will be purchased for students who are not counted in the previous year's census. Equipment and supplies will be ordered based on available funding. Districts are responsible for providing materials to ensure FAPE for the student as determined by the IEP team if APH funding is not available and the equipment or supply item is not in stock at the GIMC warehouse.

Patrons are prompted to create a special request if an item is not currently indexed in DataLnx. The GIMC will determine if the material can be purchased or created in the case of braille, enlarged or large print.

A notification will be sent via email to the patron once the request is processed. Patrons are required to send a new print copy AND a detailed course pacing guide (for braille requests only) if the GIMC intends to produce the book. A pacing guide template is located GIMC Educators page. A print copy is required for each special request that is submitted. These copies will not be returned to the districts. The GIMC will assign the NIMAC's NIMAS file to a transcriber which decreases the amount of time to transcribe a book. Districts MUST ensure through contracting that publishers submit files to the NIMAC.

Send a copy of the ink print notification, the new print copy, and the detailed pacing guide (braille only) by FIRST CLASS or MEDIA MAIL (do not use Free Matter) to: 

GIMC Macon Repository
2895 Vineville Ave
Macon, GA 31204

Delivery Timelines

The GIMC will work to ensure that orders are processed efficiently to avoid any delays. However, there may be instances in which delays are inevitable. In these circumstance patrons and/or districts will be notified.

Estimated Delivery Times ​​
Material Type
Delivery Time
In-stock materials1-2 Weeks
New Purchases4-6 Weeks
New Production (Enlarged Print)1-2 Weeks after ink print is received
New Production BrailleFollows pacing guide (see note below)
Supplies APH1-2 Weeks (dropped shipped to patron directly from APH)

Table 2. This table describes the time it takes for patrons to receive specific types of materials after the order is approved. ​

Note: Transcriptions will begin at the point in the pacing guide where it is realistic for the materials to delivered at or before the point that the student is expected to be using the materials. Districts are responsible to produce accessible materials that cannot be transcribed in time for students' use. Districts will be immediately contacted of any as soon as the transcriber has reviewed the material and provides an estimated timeline for completion.

Non-registered students   

Certified students are eligible to receive AEMs. Login to Datalnx to register new students. Select the student type (blind, visually or otherwise print-impaired, or physically disabled from the dropdown and complete the registration. Students that are registered between March 15 and the first Monday of the following January will be registered with APH during the next registration cycle following their registration. These students will be eligible for purchase of new materials after October 1st of the year in which they are registered with APH. 

Shipping

Orders are shipped through the USPS as Free Matter for the Blind. Original packing materials and containers should be used for returning the materials to the GIMC Macon Repository. Do NOT over pack boxes.

Multiple copies of books and equipment

Only one braille or large print book of the same title can be ordered per student. Additional copies are the districts' responsibility and should be duplicated at the districts' expense to meet IEP recommendations. However, duplicate orders for manual braillers and supplies will be honored based on availability and the discretion of the GIMC staff.

Out of Date Materials 

Special Requests for materials not previously acquired or produced are submitted though the online ordering system. Patrons will be contacted when textbooks with copyright dates that are greater than five years are submitted.

Consumable Materials 

Large print consumable workbooks and supplies do not need to be returned or renewed. Books will be clearly marked consumable and barcoded as non-returnable. Table 3, Understanding GIMC Barcode Media Types at the end of this section.

Material Renewals 

All books (other than consumables) and equipment are assigned for a period of one year. Each year these materials must be renewed by the patron for the same student or another student. Renewed materials should not be returned to the GIMC.  All transfers must be reported through the Datalnx system.

Patrons may transfer materials to themselves from another Patron. This transfer process is used when a patron acquires students from a previous patron's caseload. This is also done through the Datalnx system. Patrons should document transfers to a selected individual when leaving GIMC materials in a district for another patron. Patron's may use the District Material Transfer Form found on the Educator's tab of the GIMC website for their own records. The GIMC does not want this form unless there are issues with overdue or damaged materials. The patron who originally requested the materials is responsible until those materials are returned or transferred to another patron.

Returning Materials 

Use the following instructions to return materials that have not been renewed or have not been reported as consumed and are due back to the GIMC:

·        Please pack the materials securely in an appropriately sized box.

·        Enclose the following information in every box returned: Patron Name, Address, School System and a note if any volumes are missing or damaged.

·        Number all boxes in the shipment. Example 1 of 5

·        Please use the GIMC address in the Return Address portion of the box to ensure delivery in the event the Shipping Label comes off during handling at the Post Office.

·        Address the box using the address below, mark as Free Matter for the Blind and deliver to the Post Office.

GIMC Macon Repository
2895 Vineville Ave
Macon GA 31204

Barcoding

All books and equipment are barcoded at the GIMC warehouse before being released for student use. The figure below is an example of a GIMC barcode.  All barcodes include the address to which materials are to be returned, the title or name of equipment, the APH catalog number and serial number or ISBN and copyright, the acquisition cost, and the barcode number.

 

Figure 1. GIMC Barcode example, 009141 04 0002.

A GIMC barcode is comprised of three units. The first series of numbers refers to the unique item identifier. In the barcode 009141 04 002 example above, every MATT Connect is indexed as item or access number 009141. The second series of numbers represents the media type, e.g., braille, large print, equipment, etc. While the third set of numbers indicates the copy number of the item. The number 0002 in the example is assigned to the second MATT Connect that was entered into the system.

Understanding GIMC Barcode Media Types ​
Media Type Number
Media Type Description
00
Braille
01Large print
02Bookshare embossed braille
04Equipment
08Tactile graphics
09Professional materials
11Large print consumable
12Braille uncontracted
14Supply
21Testing material
​Table 3. This table lists the GIMC media type numbers ​

Equipment Repair and Damaged Materials

Normal wear and tear on equipment and books is understandable. The primary goal is to have equipment in the hands of students and occasionally damage is expected. Procedures that allow the most student independence and device safety should be implemented by all members of the school team. The GIMC will make every attempt to repair equipment. However, if the damage is a result of repeated misuse or abuse the district will be required to repair or replace the equipment at the district's cost.

Books and equipment that are not returned by the due date and/or damaged and unusable are also expected to be replaced at the district's expense. Cost of each item is clearly printed on the barcodes when the orders are originally shipped. 

An Equipment Repair Form found on the Educator page of the GIMC website MUST accompany all equipment sent in for repair.

All equipment must be returned directly to: 

GIMC Macon Repository
2895 Vineville Ave
Macon GA 31204

Sanitization 

All materials returned to the warehouse are sanitized to the best extent possible. Reused material kits are packed with an instruction placard directing patrons to follow equipment sanitization procedures that are in place in their local district. If there are no procedures for equipment sanitation, users should follow the procedures on the reverse side of the instruction placard. Reused equipment received by the district should cleaned before using. Equipment must always be sanitized after each use and before returning to the GIMC.