Web Accessibility

The Rhode Island Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (RIDE) is committed to ensuring our site’s pages and links to information are accessible.

We are continually updating and seeking ways to improve this website to ensure we are meeting the minimum Level AA compliance. Level AAA conformance is the long-term mission of RIDE, striving to align with the World Wide Web Consortium’s (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 and 508 compliance.

Problems with Accessibility on this Website?

Some common questions include:

  • Compliance Issues
  • File Remediation
  • Updates on Progress
  • General Comments and Concerns

For answers regarding the above topics or any other feedback, please contact:

web support.

RIDE will make every effort to ensure you get the information you need in a timely manner and to comply with all federal civil rights laws. For information on these laws, please view the regulations enforced by the Office of Civil Rights at the United States Department of Education.

Translation Services Disclaimer

Google Translate, a third-party service provided by Google, performs all translations directly and dynamically. RIDE has no control over the features, functions, or performance of the Google Translate service. The automated translations should not be considered exact and used only as an approximation of the original English language content. This service is meant solely for the assistance of limited English-speaking users of the website. RIDE does not warrant the accuracy, reliability, or timeliness of any information translated. Some items cannot be translated, including but not limited to image buttons, graphics, photos, or portable document formats (pdfs). RIDE does not directly endorse Google Translate or imply that it is the only language translation solution available to users.

Please Note: Google offers an alternative translation page in a non-Java format.


  • All non-text content has alternative text
  • All decorative or redundant non-text content has an empty alt tag.
  • All content that requires a plugin or applet to run (ie. PDFs or PPT) has a link to download the plugin or applet unless it is already in the skin.


  • Data tables have headers that are associated with their columns/rows with the scope attribute.
  • For complex tables, a table summary is recommended.

Special Content:

  • Audio files have a transcript.
  • Videos have captions and a transcript.
  • Client-side image maps are used instead of server-side image maps.
  • iframes have descriptive text in the title attribute.

Please Note: text alternatives are necessary for Section 508 compliance.


Meeting this standard:

  • All images, form image buttons, and image map hot spots have appropriate, equivalent alternate text
  • Equivalent alternatives to complex images are provided in context (text around the image) or on a separate (linked and/or referenced via the longdesc field) page.
  • Embedded multimedia is identified via accessible text. This is added between the open and close tags for OBJECT code and within a NOEMBED tag for EMBED code.

Guidelines for good alternative text:

  • If the content displays specific information, the text shall be an accurate, concise and equivalent presentation of this information.
  • Phrases such as “image of…”, “graphic of…” or “click here” must be avoided.
  • If an image is purely decorative, for example an image that is used for styling or layout purposes only, implement it as a CSS background image. If this is not a feasible solution, an empty alternative (e.g., alt="") must be always used. This will prevent assistive technology from trying to find a different way to describe the content (such as announcing the image's filename).
  • If the image is the sole content of a link, the alt attribute should describe the link target, not the image.

Additional notes:

  • If alternative text is needed for a complex image, such as a graph or chart, it is recommended that this be provided by the client when possible.
  • Longdesc attribute is not supported very well so alt should be used whenever possible. If this is required due to the length of the alternative text, it would probably be a good idea to have a link to the longdesc page in the content as well just in case.
  • Avoid redundancies in the content. For example: Print/Share should have the icon as a background image rather than as a separate element on the page. Current implementation of [image] [text link] results in there actually being two links right next to each other that do the same thing. If cannot do as background image, the alt attribute on the image should be empty