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Sensory & Physical Team - Visual Impairment (SEND Inclusion Support Services)

Support for children and young people with a vision impairment is provided from the point of diagnosis until the young person leaves school or further education.  The child or young person does not need to have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) to receive out support and advice.


Who are we?

We are a team of qualified teachers of the vision impaired, a qualified teacher of multi-sensory impaired and a specialist teaching assistant who are based in the Nottingham City SEND Inclusive Support Service.  We commission habilitation support for children and young people on our caseload from a partner agency.

We work closely with your visually impaired child and your family in homes, early years settings and in schools to help your child to achieve the best they can

Who do we work with?

Children and young people who

  • Who have a clinical diagnosis of a visual impairment from an ophthalmologist.  A child whose vision is corrected to normal by wearing glasses is not visually impaired.
  • Live in Nottingham city or attend a local authority school or academy.  Independent schools can choose to commission support for children when they are at statutory school age.
  • Independent schools can choose to commission support for children when they are statutory school age.

 How can your child receive support?

Often the hospital will ask you if you would like them to refer your child to us when they have been identified as having a vision impairment.

Anyone can refer a child to our service.  You can refer your child yourself or referrals can come from the Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo) at your child’s school or educational setting or from other professionals working with you or your family.


What happens after your child has been referred?

The team will contact you, your child’s early years setting or school.  Depending on need, they will either provide written advice or arrange to visit your child at home or in a school or setting. 

If they visit, they may carry out a functional vision assessment to see how your child is using their vision in the home or educational setting.  They will provide a report describing the support that your child needs.  Levels of support will vary according to the visual needs of each individual child or young person and will be based on the National Sensory Impairment Partnership (NATSIP) eligibility Framework.

Early Years Support may include

  • Home visits: Working with you to help your child maximise their use or vision or develop their tactile and audible skills
  • Providing information, support, and advice about vision impairment and how it affects your child.
  • Help you explore pre-school placements
  • Offer training to pre-school settings
  • Support transition to school
  • Refer for habilitation
  • Signpost to other agencies

Support for school and post 16 may include:

  • Providing information, support and advice about vision impairment and how it affects your child to you, schools, and colleges
  • Completing environmental audits to make sure that the school or setting is safe for your child.
  • Carry out functional visual assessments to see how your child is using their vision every day to help you and the school understand your child’s needs
  • Providing specialist teaching to support learning, this may include the use of Low Vision Aids and specialist equipment, Braille, touch typing, habilitation and mobility.
  • Liaising with other people involved with your child such as the orthoptists and ophthalmologists at the hospital to help us all have the best understanding of your child or young person’s vision.
  • Observing your child in school, then working with and providing training to the school staff to make sure that your child’s needs are met.
  • Supporting the school in setting realistic targets for your child and providing strategies and resources to help them meet their targets.
  • Supporting all transitions between classes and schools, passing on all the information about your child’s needs and if necessary, supporting your child on visits.
  • Loan of specialist equipment such as electronic magnifier’s, braille machine etc.

Who to contact

0115 8765340
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