The Outreach Program plays a key role in providing services to students who are blind, visually impaired, or multi-handicapped in South Dakota. Outreach Vision Consultants are certified teachers of the visually impaired who travel throughout the entire state providing assistance to students, families, and educators. Services may range from assisting in developing a home-based infant stimulation program to providing classroom consultation focusing on the skills of blindness addressed in the Expanded Core Curriculum. Consultants also take part in IEP meetings and conduct individual assessments.
Outreach Vision Consultants provide information, recommendations, and assistance to students, parents, and local school districts.
Outreach Vision Consultants also maintain a Loan Library and loan educational toys, materials, and adaptive equipment for students being served.
Outreach services are designed to assist local school districts in implementing appropriate educational programs for children who are visually impaired who can be served within the local district. The number of visits is determined by the child's individual needs and the desires of the parents and teachers. The intent of the program is to be as flexible and responsive as possible.
There are currently six Outreach Vision Consultants throughout the state with offices in Aberdeen, Mitchell, Pierre, Brookings, Sioux Falls, and Spearfish. Dividing the state into six territories helps to reduce travel time and increase time spent working with and for students. Each Outreach Vision Consultant will have an active caseload of approximately 30-50 students at any given time.
As a part of the school’s educational services, there is no charge for in-state students for services provided by our staff, including consultant visits, evaluations, tuition, room/board, or fees.
Referrals can be made by parents, school administrators, teachers, eye care specialists, agencies, and concerned individuals.