Long demands meeting with Minister to get more help for children with sight loss

Alliance Party Deputy Leader, Naomi Long MLA, has demanded a meeting with the Education Minster in a bid to get government to provide more learning resources for school pupils with sight loss. Her demand comes after she spoke at the launch of the Royal National Institute for the Blind’s ‘Where’s my book’ campaign.

The East Belfast Assembly Member stated: “I have written to the Minister, Maria Eagle, to request that government provide more help in schools for children with sight loss. More resources are needed as a matter of urgency because 75% of blind and partially sighted young people cannot get a job after they leave school.

“Only 30% of young people with sight loss get at least 5 A-C grades in GCSEs, but 60% of the total population get these grades. This figure illustrates the lack of adequate resources and support provided to help blind and partially sighted people in education.

“This is not only about qualifications and jobs. It is about ensuring that people with sight loss can play the fullest possible role in society.

“I was shocked when I heard that there are no keystage 3 science textbooks available in an accessible format.

“The report launched today highlights the problems and illustrates the solution. We need to provide more resources in Braille format, large print or digital resources. I call on the Minister to meet with politicians and the RNIB to ensure that this problem is properly addressed as soon as possible.”


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