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Visual impairment is when your child has sight loss that can't be fully corrected using glasses or contact lenses. Visual impairments range from severely sight impaired (blind) to sight impaired (partially sighted), both can affect near vision, distance vision or visual fields.

We provide:

  • advice to families and carers, early years settings, schools (including specialist provision) about practical and educational implications of the child/young person's visual impairment
  • practical and/or emotional support for families
  • guidance on access to the curriculum (including the sensory/experiential curriculum)
  • assess functional vision
  • direct teaching and training for parents and other professionals
  • support the development of independence skills and the social and emotional well-being of a child/young person
  • monitor progress and contribute to target setting
  • major contribution to early identification and assessment of children and young people with visual impairment in accordance with the SEND code of practice
  • alternative methods of access for example providing braille or modified resources
  • mobility assessment and training
  • peer awareness training
  • specialist resources (enlarged books, touch typing programmes, writing slopes, access technology)
  • environmental audits with advice on improving visual accessibility
  • one-off advice following assessment where the child or young person doesn't meet the criteria for on-going support
  • signposting to other organisations (including on-going liaison with relevant organisations and running joint events as appropriate)
  • enhanced support for pupils/families/schools at key times (transition)
  • registration of visual impairment visits

We work closely with the following organisations and professionals:

  • speech and language therapists
  • special educational needs coordinators
  • school based staff
  • educational psychologists
  • physiotherapists, volunteers (for example RNIB)
  • parent support advisors
  • paediatricians
  • adult rehabilitation teams
  • Sensory Solutions
  • Royal Eye Infirmary

How to request support

If you need more information or support contact SEND Access Early Help. Email:

Medical information is required which we use with a visual assessment (where relevant) and criteria from the National Sensory Impairment Partnership to decide on the level of support given.

Use the Plymouth Online Directory to view the Plymouth SEND Local Offer