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The California State University remains strongly committed to providing access to information resources and technologies to individuals with disabilities. This commitment is articulated by Chancellor Charles B. Reed in the January 2005 CSU Executive Order 926, "The CSU Board of Trustees Policy on Disability Support and Accommodations," which states:"It is the policy of the CSU to make information technology resources and services accessible to all CSU students, faculty, staff and the general public regardless of disability."
In January 2006, the CSU launched the Accessible Technology Initiative (ATI) to develop a work plan and provide guidance and resources to assist campuses in carrying out the accessible technology provisions of EO 926. Originally issued as AA-2006-41 and commonly referred to as the "coded memo," the memo was updated in February 2007 as AA-2007-04, "Access to Electronic and Information Technology for Persons with Disabilities." Significant consultation took place in the development of the plan. Those consulted included the Technology Steering Committee, the Statewide Academic Senate, the Academic Technology Advisory Committee, the Provosts' Technology Steering Committee, the Council of Administration and Business Officers, Student Affairs Vice Presidents, the CSU Services to Students with Disabilities Advisory Committee, the Information Technology Advisory Committee and other system-wide advisory bodies and groups.
The following laws support the executive order and coded memorandum:
The Chancellor's Office has three priorities associated with the Accessible Technology Initiative: (1) accessibility of the web, (2) accessibility of instructional materials and (3) accessibility of electronic and information technology (E&IT) procurement.
On October 5, 2006, the California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) Campus Information Technology Committee discussed ATI staffing and made recommendations regarding ATI project participants. Subsequently, on October 18, 2006, I designated Douglas W. Robinson, Vice President for Student Services, as the Executive Sponsor who would lead the campus compliance efforts.
At CSULB, the campus objective is to implement the Accessible Technology Initiative Work Plan, as delineated in the coded memo (AA-2007-04), in a timely manner. It is evident that implementation of the ATI Work Plan must be a process of continuous improvement that will require a multi-year, phased approach.
Under the terms of the work plan, following are the preliminary objectives and timeline for the campus ATI process:
The focus of the first year is on planning, policy and procedures development, communication and training. Initial implementation will begin during the second half of the year.
Full implementation of campus plans will begin, with the goal of integrating accessibility at the design stage of software, web, and course development, and in business and instructional practices.
During the third year, the campus will assess the process to determine the outcomes achieved and the effectiveness of plan implementation. Based on assessment results, strategies and actions will be adjusted as necessary.
In consultation with various groups on campus, I have appointed the following individuals to the Steering Committee:
In recognition of the organizational work this project will require, the Steering Committee is authorized to maintain the following subcommittees and membership. Additionally, the Steering Committee is free to add more subcommittees, and subcommittee members, to complete this task.
To increase campus awareness of the Accessible Technology Initiative and the Campus ATI Work Plan, orientation sessions will be provided to various campus constituencies, including the President’s Cabinet, College Deans, Academic Senate Executive Committee, Staff Council and the Associated Students Senate. The orientation schedule will be announced at a later date.
A website, which will include the specific timeline and action steps that will be taken related to the ATI process, is under development. As soon as the site is completed, a link to the site will be posted on the university’s home page.
The Accessible Technology Initiative is a critically important assignment for this university during the next three years. The burden to meet this challenge rests squarely with the entire university and not simply with the ATI Steering Committee. To that end, I am pledging the full support of the university community with this effort.
I look forward to working with all of you during this important process.