Feature Request: Accessibility Features- Text to Speech

Our students could greatly benefit from a feature within Seesaw that would allow students to highlight text and have it be read to them.  We are using Seesaw with all students and this would be especially helpful with our youngers and special needs students. Thank you!

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Comments

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  • I agree.  Having text-to-speech enabled in all text within Seesaw would improve accessibility for children and families with disabilities and increase independence for younger, less proficient readers.

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  • This would be a great feature for younger students k-1 students who learning to write/spell.

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  • SeeSaw needs to work on integration with other tools such as Snap and Read Universal on an iPad or design / add Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and text to speech directly into SeeSaw.  The lack of accessibility features beyond dictation and speech to text is detrimental to a large population of students. 

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  • As an Assistive Technology Specialist working in K-12, I'd like to share a story.  During a virtual session I had this morning, facilitated by the classroom teacher, we attempted to use Read & Write for Google Chrome layered on top of Seesaw for Text-to-speech (TTS) and Speech recognition.  Speech Recognition worked, whereas TTS did not.  The result?  Everyone abandoned the activity, and we had to switch to Google Docs in order to use built-in, and layered tools on top - both of which are critical to student learning. We all lost valuable time, and the risk of abandonment of assistive technology supports for student learning went up.  

    Seesaw itself is not accessible, nor can critical UDL/AT tools be properly integrated with the Seesaw platform.  This was a fundamental design error - during Seesaw's creation, the development team should have consulted with someone who knows about accessibility; specifically about text and materials that are "Born Accessible".  It doesn't take a lot of additional effort to ensure that minimum accessibility standards are met during the design phase, but it takes countless, frustrating attempts by educators, parents, and students to layer "accessibility tools" onto an inaccessible platform, only to find out those do not work either.  Bottom line, if you're a vendor of educational materials to K-12, you really SHOULD know better.  We're talking about 20% of the student population with some type of disability that may not be able to properly access material.  "Disability" aside, K-12 education has been moving towards UDL for DECADES now.  Multiple means of engagement, multiple means of representation.  I'm really baffled by how tech companies/vendors can still get away with not aligning themselves to present-day MINIMUM standards for Accessible Educational Materials (AEM).  The problem is that there's a lack of accountability.  We need to hold ourselves, and those profiting from taxpayer money in our K-12 system, to a higher standard.  If you're going to play ball in K-12, check your sense of ethics and not just your bottom line...

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  • We have a number of students at our school who would benefit greatly from being able to utilize the "speak text" Accessibility feature on their iPads within the seesaw app.

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