All about the eye for north central B.C.’s low vision students

The region's students with low vision did not need to travel far this season for comprehensive assessment and support.

On May 11 at W. L. McLeod Elementary

On May 11 at W. L. McLeod Elementary

North central B.C.’s students with low vision, which cannot be corrected with glasses or surgery, did not need to travel far this season for comprehensive assessment and support.

On May 11 and 12, ten students from the region — including Moricetown, Smithers, Burns Lake, Fort St. James, and Quesnel, received low vision services and visual aids from eight eye specialists hosted at W. L. McLeod Elementary.

Station by station, students assessed their ability to see, learned about what’s structurally wrong with their eyes, tried various visual aids that current technology offers, received tips on how to navigate independently, and learned about available education tools tailored for the visually impaired.

At the end of the session, students and their accompanying family discussed next steps with their school support staff on how their needs can be supported while learning, and were gifted with basic visual aids such as monoculars and other specialized tools.

It’s the first time for Vanderhoof to host the attending medical professionals from Children’s Low Vision Project of British Columbia, which started in the Central Okanagan school district 11 years ago, said Cathy Tassie, teacher for the visually impaired in the Nechako Lakes School District.

The project’s team last came to the area in 2007 when the specialists visited Prince George, Tassie added.

“My students need to have this extra help to understand their vision more,” she said. “How to manage in unfamiliar situations or buildings, or get around town, or use crosswalks…how to be more independent.”

Aiming to help improve the quality of life of low vision students, as well as reduce the use of large print through technology, the project is a one-stop shop for families to get information that they otherwise would need to obtain from different locations, explained program coordinator Lynn Langille.

Part of the project’s focus is to provide rural communities with access to services that are normally located in larger centres in the province, Langille added.

For BreAnn Arnold, whose daughter Tia currently studies Grade 3 and has worn glasses since she was three, it was neat to have in-depth specialists to figure out what Tia needs.

“Different new tools and technology to aid her better, and to check her eyes and see how they function,” Arnold said. In the past, Tia has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus — the buildup of fluid in the cavities deep within the brain. According to a recent eye exam, her vision requires 13 units of correction for nearsightedness.  When asked what she see with a monocular held to her eye, Tia said, “I can see everything.”

 

Just Posted

The Binche Fishing Derby at Stuart Lake is fast approaching. (Binche Fishing Derby Facebook photo)
Binche shares excitement for upcoming fishing derby

“It’s more than just fishing,” says Dave Birdi

A person receives a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
Local youth vaccination clinics underway

Pfizer vaccine will be used

Priya Sharma. (Submitted)
Column: Why ultimatums don’t work

By Priya Sharma It is a common misconception that people can choose… Continue reading

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

Most Read