A Council-run education service to support young people who are blind or visually impaired.

Supports children and young people: 0-25 years

Referral reason: Concerns about a child’s vision or recent diagnosis of visual impairment.

People involved: specialist qualified teachers who specialise in vision loss (QTVI), specialist teaching assistants, resource technicians, ophthalmology (NHS)

Offer: Advisory and direct teaching support to a child or young person at home and educational setting. Support may include providing assistive technology, training in specialist skills, providing modified learning resources, curriculum adaptation and intervention teaching. 

Support for families is part of the offer due to working with very young children right through to adulthood.  The team build strong links with carers and families which helps to maintain a supportive role when working together.

The service also has an integrated resource at Tapton School for students with a vision loss.

We support transitions for children and young people with a sensory impairment.  This is at all key stages of their educational journey.

Everyone’s experience in a setting will be different. Transitions are planned with the child or young person at the centre.  The plans are based on an individuals’ unique circumstances and may include:

  • extended visits to the new setting
  • habilitation support
  • summer school
  • activities with their new peer group before attending the setting

We also work with very young children to settle them into nursery and pre-school settings.  We work with older students at post-16/18 going into further education.

We have strong links with a range of settings. This helps us to plan appropriate and effective transition packages.

Useful links

Transitions | Royal National Institute for the Blind

How to refer

Sheffield Children’s Hospital’s ophthalmology department usually refer to the service.

Schools and settings can also refer (e.g. if a child is new to the city) as long as they have parental consent and the child has a visual impairment diagnosis. (See referral and consent to share information letter.)

E-mail: visionsupport@sheffield.gov.uk
Telephone: 0114 294 1201

Available under the Links and documents section on this page

  • Graduated response practical classroom ideas for visually impaired