Decline in Braille use threatens literacy

BY CARRIE COPPERNOLL Modified: January 10, 2010 at 12:00 am •  Published: January 10, 2010

Bu
t when a doctor discovered detached retinas, the Cox family flew to a specialist in Tennessee for surgery. The surgery was successful, and Koby would likely only need glasses, the doctor told them.

A resident checked the family out of the hospital but forgot to tell them Koby shouldn’t fly. He hemorrhaged and his eyes were damaged beyond repair. "They couldn’t reattach (the retinas) because there was too much damage,” Cox said. "That’s what caused his blindness — an accident.”

Now, Koby is a smart, independent high school student who’s looking forward to graduating high school and starting a career. Koby answers technical support calls at a company that sells products for the disabled. He plans to continue that job after high school. He interacts with blind-friendly technology every day, but he still relies on Braille.

"There’s no possible way people would be able to succeed in this society without Braille,” he said. "Braille is a part of everybody’s lives every day.”



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