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Exceptional & Special Needs : Blind and Visually Impaired

Exceptional & Special Needs

Blind and Visually Impaired

We provide excellent programming for students with exceptional and special needs. Every student has unique needs, so we work with students, parents and community organizations to personalize the support for each child.

Students who are blind, visually impaired or deafblind can access programming that will help them to develop skills to be successful in school and beyond.

A specialized team of teachers and support staff work closely with schools, students and their families to assist with curriculum and program planning and delivery, provision of adaptive materials, inclusive technology, and orientation and mobility.

We follow the Alberta Programs of Study curriculum and Expanded Core Curriculum for students who are blind or visually impaired.

Access to Classes for the Visually Impaired

Students must be identified as blind or visually impaired by an ophthalmology report and/or functional vision assessment.

Students must have an Individualized Program Plan (IPP).


Head Start Braille Program
The Head Start Braille Program is for elementary age students with severe vision loss who are just beginning to use braille. This program offers intensive braille instruction on a daily basis within an inclusive school program.
Head Start Braille helps students develop:

  • literary braille
  • nemeth braille
  • orientation and mobility skills
  • inclusive technology skills
  • other disability-specific skills

Students may attend the program for 1-4 years. The program will be adapted to meet the unique needs of each student.

Short-Term Programs

Short-term programs are 1-5 days in length and help students develop disability-specific skills in the following areas:

  • Compensatory or functional academic skills
  • Orientation and mobility skills
  • Social interaction skills
  • Self-determination skills
  • Independent living skills
  • Recreation and leisure skills
  • Career and education skills
  • Inclusive/Assistive technology skills
  • Sensory efficiency skills

Each program supports students’ core instructional program and inclusion in their community school program. Referral to a short-term program is made through a teacher of the visually impaired.


Community Schools are considered first for meeting the needs of all students including students who are blind/visually impaired. The Vision Resource Centre located at Captain John Palliser School, is one of three Vision Resource Centres in Alberta that support students with vision loss. The Head Start Braille Program and the Short-term programs are offered at the Vision Resource Centre.

Vision Resource Centre – Calgary
Captain John Palliser School
1484 Northmount Drive N.W.
Calgary, Alberta T2L 0G6
t | 403-777-7964
f | 403-777-7967


 Supporting Documents

Last modified: 10/20/2015 9:12 AM
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