What is vision impairment? 

Any optically or medically diagnosable condition of the eyes or visual system which affects the structure and functioning of that system, that results in less than normal vision and interferes with development or adversely affects educational performance.

What are the goals of the BVISP Program?

  • To teach each student to function as independently as possible

  • To enable each student to meet their educational requirements in the least restrictive environment

  • To support the Local Education Agency which provides basic education programs to students with visual impairments

How is eligibility for services determined?

Determination of eligibility for vision services includes a referral (click here to download the BVISP Referral Form) and a comprehensive assessment by a multidisciplinary evaluation team (click here to view the BVISP Eligibility Criteria).  

Who may be referred?

School personnel, parents, medical, professional or community agencies may refer children from three through 21 years of age (click here to view the BVISP Referral Process).

What areas may be assessed? 

Educational functional vision, Orientation and Mobility, Assistive Technology, and any other area thought to be significant are assessed to determine unique educational needs. 

What additional information is needed?

A written report of the most recent vision examination by an ophthalmologist or optometrist must be included with a child's referral. Upon receipt of the eye report, school records are reviewed and then parental consent to evaluate is obtained. 

What services are available to the classroom teacher and school personnel?

  • Instruction in specialized methods and techniques to adapt classroom activities
  • Interpretation of medical data and visual functioning
  • In-Service training

Vision Education or Vision Therapy?

An optometric vision therapist or a reading specialist, not a teacher of the visually impaired, best serves a visual impairment that involves visual perception or visual motor dysfunction, resulting solely in a learning disability. The AIU BVISP only employs teachers of the visually impaired and orientation and mobility specialists. Click here to read about the differences between a Vision Teacher and Vision Therapist.

Please contact Jeanine Esch at 412-394-4538 or for additional information.



Click here to log in
Copyright TEXT Allegheny Intermediate Unit. All Rights Reserved.