People's Democratic Republic of Algeria
Ministry of National Education
National Institute for Research in Education

A collaborative working environment and scientific research adapted to success

Braille documentary collection

The category of the blind is one that has garnered significant attention from the United Nations, particularly in the realm of education. The United Nations General Assembly, through Resolution No. 161/73 of November 2018, has designated the 4th of January each year as an international day dedicated to this category. This date holds special significance as it marks the birth of Louis Braille (1809), the inventor of the Braille language. This initiative aligns with the broader promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms. The ability to engage with a written language is deemed essential for the complete acknowledgment of the human rights of blind and partially sighted individuals, as well as other marginalized groups.

The inaugural celebration of this international day took place in 2019, with the primary objective of encouraging visually impaired individuals to read and write, thereby enhancing their active and positive involvement in their communities.

Acknowledging the United Nations’ commitment to realizing the educational rights of the blind, there is a pressing need to leverage technology in support of this community. Technological applications, such as those employing audio technology, aiding Braille reading and writing, enlarging texts and images, and computer-based applications tailored for specific needs, play a crucial role. These technologies empower the blind to be self-reliant, enhance their communication capabilities, facilitate mobility, and ensure their safety.

In tandem with global efforts, Algeria, like other nations, seeks to address the challenges hindering the blind from accessing education, aligning with the overarching goal of providing equal opportunities in education as stipulated in Algeria’s directive law on education. The organization of this scientific day underscores the National Institute for Research in Education’s commitment to commemorating World Braille Day and reaffirms its dedication to advancing the interests and well-being of the blind community.

In alignment with the unwavering commitment of the President of the Republic to provide comprehensive support to determined individuals, encompassing a dedicated focus on the promotion of education for the visually impaired, and as part of the Ministry of National Education’s strategic plan to actualize the principle of equality and pedagogical support for this specific category, the National Institute for Research in Education has undertaken various initiatives. These endeavors, under the guidance of the Institute’s Director, Prof. Radia Bernaoui, included the organization of a study day on January 4, 2023, titled “Braille Teaching and Teaching: Practices and Perspectives.” The event underscored the critical role of education within this societal category. Notably, the involvement of State institutions, civil society, the private sector, and citizens underscores Algeria’s commitment to safeguarding the rights and fostering opportunities for these individuals in line with international agreements.

Considering the National Institute for Research in Education as the preeminent national organization in the educational domain and the sole educational research center in Algeria, its research policy is strategically oriented towards intensifying efforts in the field of education. Specialized researchers within the institute undertake studies and research projects aimed at exploring effective approaches to educating the visually impaired. Of particular emphasis is the attention given to Braille technology as a pivotal tool, offering decisive educational opportunities in this context. The institute has officially designated a special wing within the “Omar Yassef” media library for the Braille documentary collection, symbolizing the recognition and inclusion of the blind within one of its crucial spaces. Furthermore, the institute actively engages in the organization of national scientific seminars and open-door events, creating a platform for educational actors and specialists to discuss pertinent issues. On the occasion of International Braille Language Day, these activities facilitate collaboration with specialized experts and have resulted in the formation of two significant agreements. One agreement is with the Director of the National Office of School Publications, and the second is with the Director of the National Association of Blind Algerians, fostering partnerships and cooperation in the realm of education for the visually impaired.

The creation of the Braille Pavilion at the Omar Yassef Media Library serves multiple objectives :

  • Promoting the integration of blind individuals into society.
  • Proposing research ideas aimed at enhancing the lives of the visually impaired.
  • Implementing mechanisms to improve access to national and university libraries for persons with blindness.
  • Facilitating the exploration of the history of the development of Braille technology.
  • Enhancing knowledge of Algerian textbooks used in the learning and teaching of the blind group.
  • Enriching the media library with a diverse collection of works written in Braille.