DRM Roles and Responsibilities

As per The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA 2004), the provision of AEM (Accessible Educational Materials) to students with documented print disabilities in specialized formats in a timely manner is a federal mandate. To not identify students and provide the needed specialized formats of print instructional materials puts school corporations in a potential position of liability.

The Indiana Department Of Education (IDOE) directs Superintendents (or her/his designee) of each public school corporation to appoint up to five (5) Digital Rights Managers (DRMs) to support the National Instructional Materials Accessibility Standard (NIMAS) Regulations of the IDEA 2004, for the schools they serve; every charter school may appoint three (3). Please consider having five (5) DRM’s for your school corporation no matter what the size of the corporation, or the number of students currently identified with some type of print disability. Personnel changes and many other factors may leave a school corporation without a properly trained DRM.

Remember that scientific, documented, replicated research tells us that 1 in 5 individuals have dyslexia. There is a good chance that there are children in your corporation with this specific learning disability who are not being adequately identified and served. For further resources on dyslexia, please visit DRM Resources.

It is better to have trained, active DRMs in your school corporation who may never be called on to fulfill their role than it is for your school to be in another scenario: that of having no trained and active DRMs to meet the needs of students. Please be aware that lawsuits have come about due to a school’s non-compliance with the NIMAS regulations.

DRMs are responsible for:

As you consider your team of DRMs, please include staff from various roles.  An efficient DRM team might include special educators for LD and VI, a general educator, someone from the technology department who can assist others with digital downloads, and perhaps a Reading Specialist, SLP, OT, or other special service area provider. Often a superintendent will appoint a designee such as the special education director, or the building principal, to select DRMs, and that is acceptable.