Richard Holden, the MP for North West Durham, met children and young people with visual impairments through Guide Dogs’ “All Things Equal” campaign to talk about the challenges they face in the education system.
Recent research conducted for Guide Dogs found that 69% of teachers lack confidence that they have the right skills to support disabled children, including those with a vision impairment, to reach their full potential. This is reflected in outcomes for children with sight loss, who are significantly behind their peers in terms of academic attainment.
Guide Dogs’ “All Things Equal” campaign is calling for greater recognition of vision impairment throughout the Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) system. The critical role of specialist professionals needs to be prioritised, and more support should be given at an earlier stage to help prevent young people with sight loss from falling behind.
Commenting, Richard Holden MP said:
“I met some furry friends this week in Parliament. Kelsie, pictured next to me, is helping young people who have a visual impairment to allow them to live their lives as close to normal as possible. The Guide Dogs charity does amazing work to support children and their families with sight loss.”