50 children who are blind and visually impaired selected to participate in competition that tests and promotes braille literacy

LOS ANGELES, June 1, 2020 — Braille Institute is proud to announce the 50 finalists for the 2020 Braille Challenge Finals competition. Braille Challenge is celebrating its 20th anniversary and will be holding Finals testing and an award ceremony remotely this year to accommodate social distancing.

The full list of Finalists can be found on Braille Institute’s website.

Finalists are placed into five categories (Apprentice, Freshman, Sophomore, Junior Varsity and Varsity) based on their age. Those who finish with the 10-best scores in each category from Regional competitions that took place all around North America earlier in 2020 qualify for Finals.

Finals are traditionally held in Los Angeles on the campus of the University of Southern California. However, this year’s Finals testing and surrounding events will be conducted remotely, with Finalists testing in their hometowns and the closing Award Ceremony held via live stream.

Closing ceremonies are set for July 25 and will be live streamed on Braille Institute’s YouTube Channel.

Closing ceremonies will include the announcement of the winners, guest speakers, and other entertainment. The week leading up will include multiple workshops conducted by leading organizations and companies in the visual impairment and assistive technology fields.

Despite social distancing, Braille Institute has found a way to carry on with Braille Challenge Finals by bringing the competition to the students. “This year, rather than having students and families come to us, we’re taking Braille Challenge Finals directly to them,” said Sergio Oliva, Associate Vice President, National and Youth Programs for Braille Institute. “The digital experience we created captures the essence of the two-day event and celebration and effectively champions braille literacy.”

The Braille Challenge is the only academic competition of its kind in North America for students who are blind or visually impaired. It motivates students grades 1-12 to hone and practice their braille literacy skills. Competitors are tested on fundamental braille skills such as reading comprehension, spelling, speed and accuracy, proofreading, and charts and graphs.

“We couldn’t be more ecstatic to host Braille Challenge Finals and this year we are doing everything associated with the program through the lens of our new motto which is ‘Keep Calm and Braille On,”‘ said Oliva.

Visit brailleinstitute.org/braille-challenge for more information and announcements.