Blind/Visually Impaired Advisory Committee

Operating Policies and Procedures

Minnesota Blind-Visually Impaired (BVI) Advisory Committee:


The purpose of the BVI advisory committee is twofold:

  1. To provide specific advice and counsel to the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE Specialist for BVI) regarding the provision of summer institutes or other training programs throughout the state for students who are blind or visually impaired and or multiply impaired. MDE must also offer workshops for teachers and leadership development for teachers.
  2. To provide specific advice and counsel regarding general procedures for addressing the needs of students who are BVI within the context of special education program rules, priorities, procedures, and funding; and to assist school districts or other organizations to develop innovative programs to support student needs.


  1. Submit an annual report to the Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) and share information with the MDE Special Education Advisory Panel.
  2. Review and approve Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation and Educational Professionals (ACVREP) Registered Provider of Professional Learning and Education (RPPLE) requests.
  3. Review and approve BVI resource materials recommended for the Minnesota Resource Libraries.


The Committee shall consist of 10-12 members including:

  1. One or two parents of children who are BVI.
  2. One or two teachers with license in Visual Impairment serving students.
  3. One related service staff person employed to work with students who are BVI.
  4. One representative of an Institute of Higher Education that prepares teachers to work with students who are BVI.
  5. One or two special education directors, coordinators, or supervisors.
  6. Two to three people from another state agency or nonprofit agency that has a mission that includes services to children birth – 21 who are BVI.
  7. One student who is BVI.

Definitions for Council Membership

  • Parents: A parent/guardian of a school aged child (birth – 22) who is BVI.
  • Teacher: A licensed teacher of the visually impaired working in a public education program.
  • Higher Education: A representative of an institute of higher education that prepares teachers to work with children who are BVI.
  • Administrators: A supervisor within a public school including, principals, special education directors, superintendents or other education administrators.
  • Program/State Agency: Representative of a program/agency that, as a part of the mission of the organization, works with children who are BVI.
  • Student: A student who is BVI that is currently enrolled in a public education program.
  • At least one of the teachers or administrators shall represent the Minnesota State Academy for the Blind. The Committee shall be geographically representative of the state and include at least two members who are BVI.

Terms of Membership

Appointments: Interested parties apply through the Office of the Secretary of State Open Appointments process. The Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Education appoints members to serve on two to four-year staggering appointments.

Replacements: If a member is replaced midterm, the replacement will serve out the balance of the current term.

Reimbursement for expenses: Members may receive reimbursement for the expenses they incur to attend meetings at rates provided by MDE policy.

Meeting frequency: The advisory committee will hold four meetings each year and additional meetings will be scheduled if necessary.

Fiscal year: For purposes of the advisory committee, the fiscal year begins July 1 and extends through June 30 of the following year.