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Visual Impairment including Blindness

Definition: A child with a Visual Impairment, including Blindness shall have a deficiency in visual acuity and/or visual field and/or visual functioning where, even with the use of lenses or corrective devices, he/she is prevented from receiving reasonable educational benefit from general education.

Children and youth who are blind or have low vision in Colorado have access to a range of services for their education and social support. The majority of students who are blind or low vision attend a public school in Colorado. Close to 60 students are served at the Colorado School for the Blind, which is located on the campus of the Colorado School for the Deaf and the Blind in Colorado Springs. Almost every Colorado administrative unit has employed or has contract access to a teacher certified in the area of blindness/visual impairment (TVI) and a certified Orientation and mobility Specialist. These individuals work with other educational team members to ensure that the students who are blind or have low vision have access to the general education curriculum and the related services that are identified on their Individualized Education Programs.


State Eligibility and Demographic Information in Colorado

House Bill 11-1277, which was passed in May 2011, made several conforming amendments in the Exceptional Children's Education Act (ECEA) to align with federal terms and requirements and/or terminology used in the field. The changes to the Colorado eligibility categories and their eligibility criteria were approved by the Colorado State Board of Education and finalized in the Rules for the Administration of the Exceptional Children's Act in October 2012.

Colorado Administrative Units can begin to use the new disability definition and eligibility criteria as of November 2012. These definitions and criteria must be adopted no later than July 1, 2016.

Definition and Eligibility Criteria

Visual Disability (prior to HB11-1277)

Visual Impairment, Including Blindness (post HB11-1277)


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For more information on Visual Impairment including Blindness, please contact:

Tanni Anthony
Phone: 303-866-6681

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Colorado Dept. of Education
201 East Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80203
Phone: 303-866-6600
Fax: 303-830-0793
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