Welcome to the VI Resource Base

Welcome to the website for the Resource Base for Students who have a Vision Loss here at Plantsbrook School.  We host one of only two bases in the West Midlands area and offer places to students with a vision loss from the City of Birmingham and other adjoining Local Authorities.  We are a mainstream secondary school who provide a full, broad and balanced mainstream curriculum at Key Stage three and four and where appropriate, study in our highly popular Sixth Form allowing each individual to ‘Be the Best you can Be’.

We currently have 12 students in the base ranging from Year Seven to Year Thirteen. Each student has an Educational Health and Care Plan identifying their visual and where appropriate, additional learning needs.  All students participate in National Curriculum lessons alongside their sighted peers using modified work and generic and specialist ICT equipment to access resources including laptop computers, Braille Note Touch machines and I Pads.  

As necessary, in class support from our team of Specialist Teaching Assistants is also provided, although it is our long term aim to make students independent both inside and beyond the classwork environment.  Our Teaching Assistants also modify resources provided by the subject teachers, provide pre and post lesson tutoring and act as mentors in nurturing emotional welfare.

The Base is also supported by a Qualified Teacher of the Visually Impaired, (QTVI) who is based full time at Plantsbrook School.  Their role is to provide specialist teaching opportunities including the delivery of Tactile, (Braille, tactile diagrams) and Auditory (ICT) skills, allowing alternative access to the learning environment.  The Qualified Teacher is also responsible for training staff and sighted students in the general awareness of the needs of young people with a sight loss as well as addressing issues relating to specific subjects and other day to day matters.

In addition to providing an academic rich learning environment, students also participate in lessons that offer ‘Preparation for Adulthood’.  Many of these activities are embedded in the pastoral life of Plantsbrook School, although additional opportunities are offered off timetable where work is undertaken with the cohort of students with a vision loss.  This will include preparing for the work of work, developing independence skills, identifying opportunities to become involved in community life and living a healthy lifestyle. We are fortunate to be able to access services provided by Careers Advisors, Habilitation Officers and other external agencies where specialist additional knowledge may be advantageous. This includes identifying post sixteen pathways in many college environments relating to the interest of the individual and their personal needs.

The Students supported by the VI Base are also fully encouraged to take part in extra Curricular activities alongside their sighted peers.  This may include lunchtime, after school and residential trips where new skills and social friendships can be acquired and nurtured beyond the school environment. 

If you would like more information regarding Plantsbrook School and in particular how the Resource Base for Students who have a Vision Loss may be able to support the education of your child, please feel free to contact us at s.turnbull@plantsbrookschool.co.uk. Visits can be organised both during and after the school day at a time to suit you.

Plantsbrook Learning Trust Registered Company Number: 07655702

Upper Holland Road – Sutton Coldfield – B72 1RB

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