Congratulations to Mary Verlinde (Region 7 & 8) Regional Coordinator for NDVS/SB. She recently tested for the Perkins-Roman CVI Range Endorsement and is now among fewer than 150 professionals nationwide with this credential. Mary also happens to be the first teacher of the visually impaired in North Dakota to attain the endorsement. CVI is the leading cause of visual impairment in the United States currently and happens to be associated with some of the most significant challenges for educators to understand. This is a nice step forward for North Dakota and we hope it leads to more people seeking this training and the endorsement.
Cortical visual impairment (CVI), also called cerebral visual impairment or cortical blindness, refers to vision loss that is caused by damage to the pathways between the eye and the brain and the specific parts of the brain responsible for vision. In many cases, people with CVI have completely normal eyes. The most common cause of CVI-related brain damage is hypoxia (when the brain does not get enough oxygen). The condition can also be caused by head injury, abnormalities in brain formation, hydrocephalus (increased fluid and pressure in the brain), seizures, metabolic diseases, infection, or neurologic disorders.
The incidence of CVI is increasing in part because advances in the ability to diagnose and treat complications in newborns have helped more babies survive when there is neurological damage.