Who we are...
This service is part of the wider Inclusion and Specialist Support Team and a part of Hackney Education's enhanced support for children with additional needs. This specialist sensory team supports children and young people with:
- Visual Impairment
- Multi-Sensory Impairment (MSI)/Deafblindness
The team is made up of:
- Two Qualified Teachers for Visual Impairment (QTVI)
- One Qualified Teacher for Visual Impairment and Multi-Sensory Impairment (QTVI/MSI)
- A Habilitation/Mobility Specialist
- A Specialist Portage Worker for Sensory Impairment
What we do..
Our specialist sensory team offers advice and support to families and children from diagnosis and beyond.
We help monitor and support children and young people's progress in early years and throughout all stages of education.
What support do we provide to children and families outside of school...
- Support for families at home after diagnosis
- Liaising with medical professionals
- Advising on toys, play and resources that support skills development
Do you offer a drop in session for families?
Yes. The service runs a monthly term time drop in session for families with children who are visually impaired and aged 0-4. Theses take place in a sensory room at Linden Children's Centre and offer access to specialist sensory equipment and toys. Parent-carers can come and get support and advice from the team and meet and make friends with other families and children.
Call the service if you need to check dates for the next session.
What support do we provide for children in education?
- Information on school options; mainstream, additionally resource bases in mainstream schools and specialist schools
- Advice to schools and settings on how to include visually impaired children
- Support for children and young people in their learning
- Monitoring school placements
- Contributing to planning, reviews and reports
We monitor children’s progress when they start at an early years settings and through their time at school.
We can advise and support families to explore different options for their child’s development and education.
Advice can be offered to both families and education settings.
The service works with other professionals and services working with visually impaired children. We contribute to plans at important stages in a child’s education also referred to as transition. This includes providing advice on transition to further education.
What support can we offer for Children and Young People who have Multi-Sensory Impairment (MSI)/Deafblindness?
Our team includes a teacher who is a qualified MSI teacher who can offer deafblind/MSI children and young people :
- Assessment of their needs as deafblind/MSI learners
- Advice to schools on including children and their specialist curriculum requirements
- Support for intervenors in school settings
- Environmental assessments
- Support and advice to families about communicating with and supporting their child’s development
- Training for teachers and professionals providing services to deafblind/MSI children and young people.
- Contribute to planning and reviews, including reports
- Deafblind Guidance Assessments as part of an overall social care assessment
The Visual Impairment (VI) Team and Elective Home Education
If a parent-carer decides to educate their child at home, they take on responsibility for their child’s education. This is called Elective Home Education (EHE). If this is a choice you are making we advise that you register for EHE when your child reaches compulsory school age. This is the term after their 5th birthday. Information and instructions are included in Hackney Education's Elective Home Education (EHE) Policy.
The VI team will monitor the home provision with a termly or annual visit, depending on the nature and extent of sensory impairment.
If the child has an EHC Plan, a personal education budget can be requested from the EHC Planning Team.
A timetable of education activities, with any costs, must be provided. This is sometimes called provision mapping. Personal Budget applications and activities will be considered by the EHC Planning Panel or EHC Plan Management Team.
This team and panel makes the final decision to agree the personal education budget. Parent's have a right of appeal through the tribunal process.
If the education provision a child is receiving is not considered to be suitable, attendance procedures will be followed.
Record Last Updated on: 19/01/2021