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Curriculum Framework for Children and Young People with Vision Impairment

A young boy sitting at a desk being taught by an adult.

A young boy sitting at a desk being taught by an adult.

The Curriculum Framework for Children and Young People with Vision Impairment (CFVI) has been developed to support children and young people with vision impairment access an appropriate and equitable education.

The framework presents outcomes within 11 areas: Facilitating an Inclusive World; Sensory Development; Communication; Literacy; Habilitation: Orientation and Mobility; Habilitation: Independent Living Skills; Accessing information; Technology; Health: Social, Emotional, Mental and Physical Wellbeing; Social, Sports and Leisure; Preparing for Adulthood.

At the heart of the Framework is a set of three fundamental aims:

  • To help clarify and define the elements of specialist skill development, interventions and best practice support that are considered to be essential for children and young people with vision impairment;
  • To assist qualified specialist practitioners in raising the awareness amongst other professionals and parents of the need for children and young people with vision impairment to be taught skills that enable them to access the curriculum and the wider world with as much independence as possible; 
  • To aid discussions and understanding amongst all involved in a child/young person’s education of how and when these skills should be taught by suitably qualified specialists and reinforced by non-specialists.

Information for parents and carers

The CFVI can be used to enable parents and carers to understand the pathways of support for their child and the services who may be involved in providing that support within a given nationwide context.

This increased understanding of the areas of focus for a child’s learning, development and wider participation and the common language and shared vocabulary that the CFVI provides, should enable parents to feel more comfortable and confident when meeting professionals to discuss their child’s progress and participation in education and the wider world.

Download your copy now:

Following the launch of the Parent Guide, we have worked together with parents to develop an FAQ which captures questions covered in the launch session and those sent to us via email. Download the CFVI Parent Guide FAQ here:

If you have any questions about the Parent Guide or the CFVI itself, please contact us by emailing: [email protected] with ‘CFVI Parent Guide’ in the subject line.

CFVI Resource Hub – RNIB Bookshare

To accompany the framework, we have developed an online resource hub which is available to all professionals working with children and young people with a vision impairment, free of charge through RNIB Bookshare.

The hub hosts and signposts to resources that have been developed and submitted by individuals, organisations and services from across the sector in relation to delivering the specialist skill areas defined by the new framework.

Visit the RNIB Bookshare CFVI Resource Hub.

This Resource Hub is in its pilot phase of development and we plan to refine both the resources and method of access as the CFVI becomes embedded in practice across the sector. Your feedback is really important to us and will support us to do this in relation to improved functionality or further resource development so that we can ensure you have the resources you require to teach the essential specialist skills, children and young people with a vision impairment may require.

Please let us know your feedback by emailing us at [email protected]

Specialist Resources and Sensory Support Service Documents

Download our new CFVI Specialist Resources now!

Working with partners across the sector and the UK, we have developed a suite of PowerPoint resources focusing on the different key areas of the CFVI. These resources can be used by specialists working with Children and Young People with Vision Impairment (CYPVI) in the field of VI education to support training to key stakeholders and to encourage and support the embedding of the CFVI within all settings.

The training manual that accompanies the PowerPoints provides an overview of their content, including the key messages of each resource. The manual focuses on two of the PowerPoints in detail providing annotations to highlight similarities across the design of slides for Areas 2-11 as well providing an annotation of the Area 1 resource, where the content is organised slightly differently. Finally, the manual explores how the resources might be customised by a presenter.

Resources by CFVI Area

The resources below provide an introduction to each area and provide examples of; potential barriers to facilitating inclusion for CYPVI, targeted intervention approaches we can draw upon to help reduce these, the opportunity to reflect on the social experiences and developmental paths of individual CYPVI, good practice principles for supporting CYPVI in education. and links to useful resources/websites for each CFVI area.

Introduces the CFVI detailing why it was developed, who it is intended to be used with and how it can be helpful to a range of stakeholders.

Focuses on how we can all work together to facilitate a more inclusive world for children and young people with vision impairment.

Focuses on senses and looks at why interventions to promote sensory development are important for CYPVI.

Recognises the importance of working with the child/young person to develop effective communication in formal and informal settings through specialist adjustments or adopting alternative or bespoke approaches to teaching.

Recognises the importance of working with CYPVI to develop their literacy skills and promote accessible learning environments.

Recognises the importance of teaching CYPVI to be able to navigate the world around them and move safely from one area to the next.

Recognises the importance of supporting CYPVI to develop the day-to-day skills they need in order to live as independent a life as possible.

Considers the teaching of methods CYPVI can use to access, manage and produce information as independently as possible.

Recognises the importance of CYPVI being provided with the training and opportunity to be able to use technology and equipment with as much independence as possible.

Recognises that CYPVI need targeted teaching to support the development of their mental and emotional resilience in a world that should be inclusive, as well as their mental, emotional, social and physical wellbeing.

Recognises the importance of supporting CYPVI to access and participate in a range of social, sport and leisure opportunities.

Recognises the importance of supporting CYPVI to prepare for their lives after compulsory education.

Guidance for customising your training presentation(s)

The resources have been designed for use by specialist practitioners who work in vision impairment education (i.e. QTVIs and QRHS). As indicated in the Training Manual they are intended to be customised as required for use in bespoke training. An important distinction is made however between the content of the non-customisable slides and those that are explicitly labelled as ‘customisable’. You should therefore retain the content of non-customisable slides within each PowerPoint, and where work on slides indicated as customisable is your own this should be clearly signaled as part of your training presentation. The training manual is not designed to be customised so should not be modified in any way. Adherence to this guidance should ensure that the integrity of the resources is preserved.

If you have any questions or would like to get in touch, please email us at: [email protected].

NatSIP Quality Standards for Sensory Support Services in England Updated!

The NatSIP Quality Standards for Sensory Support Services in England, 2016 Edition, has been updated to take account of changes in education policy and now also includes a useful appendix which shows how the quality standards and the Curriculum Framework for Children/Young people with Vision Impairment (CFVI) support one another and the vital work of sensory support teams.

You can view and download the new revised Quality Standards for Sensory Support Services in England from the Document library on the NatSIP website.

CFVI Article in the British Journal of Vision Impairment (BJVI)

Read our latest article published in the BJVI entitled: ‘Development of a new curriculum framework for children and young people with vision impairment: A United Kingdom consultation using the Delphi approach’ (Hewett, R., Douglas, G., McLinden, M., & James, L., 2023). It presents the research and development that underpins the CFVI. The CFVI promises a transformative contribution to UK policies and practice in ensuring CYPVI and their families will more easily be able to navigate complex education systems and secure equitable access to the services to which they are entitled.

This article is available online and is free to download from Sage Journals.

CFVI Updates and Specialist Training Events

Book your place! Join us for our next CFVI CPD event to support use of the CFVI in practice.

On Wednesday 7 February from 4–5.30pm, you are invited to join us for the next in the series of CFVI focused CPD events: ‘Getting Started with the CFVI: Sharing Good Practice and Experiences (part 2)’.

Feedback from participants in our last CFVI CPD in November (available to view below) was very positive and identified a strong desire for collaborative working. It highlighted that the sharing of experiences is something the field would welcome, particularly around the resources that are being used to support the implementation of the CFVI. We have therefore structured this session in response to this feedback.

This session will focus on the sharing of resources that are supporting you in your implementation of the CFVI.

This could include sharing:

  • information about teaching resources you find useful or setting/service documentation devised that uses the language of the CFVI (For example: assessment forms; developmental profiles)
  • materials created that have been developed/adapted to align with the CFVI
  • a case study or overview of how you are using the CFVI with a child or young person.

We will invite you, in small discussion groups, to share your resources in a safe and supportive setting enabling the sharing of professional good practice and knowledge as a sector.

We are planning to produce an anonymised resource detailing good practice ideas along with experiences of embedding the CFVI in practice shared by yourselves as a useful tool for All.

Participants’ Preparation for the Session

  • Due to the practical nature of this event, we would like you to prepare for the session by sending anything you wish to share in advance to [email protected] by 15th January 2024. This will help us to plan the session.
  • Please anonymise any documentation that you send, removing the names of setting, staff and children and young people and ensure you have any necessary permissions in place to share your work at a CPD event.
  • If you are involved in the VICTAR case study, please do not share related information at this event.

Any information shared will not be endorsed by VIEW/RNIB.

This session is contingent on adequate information sharing; otherwise, it may be substituted with another CFVI related event and rescheduled for May.

We look forward to seeing you in February 2024!

Book your place now!

Booking is open for this event! Book your place now at: Training for professionals supporting learners with visual impairments | RNIB.

Next date in the CFVI series is as follows:

  • 15th May 2024

Previous Events and Updates

CPD Event: Getting Started with the CFVI: Sharing Good Practice and Experiences (November 23)

This session focused on the practical implementation of the CFVI, examining some key issues that need to be considered when seeking to embed the CFVI in practice. The session explored the distinctiveness of the framework through a case study of a young person with vision impairment (0-25 years of age) in mainstream settings, looking at how the emphasis of different Areas of the CFVI may change during a child’s educational journey and which Area(s) may remain constant throughout these years.

As part of the session, participants were invited to discuss and feedback on the following questions: What has worked well in using the CFVI in practice to date? What particular barriers have you encountered when embedding the CFVI in practice? If you have met and identified barriers in question 2 above how have you reduced them, or how are planning to reduce them? What would you suggest as a future focus for training sessions on the CFVI scheduled for February and May 2024?

If you would like to feedback your views on these questions in lieu of the next session, please email [email protected] with the subject: CFVI.

CFVI Launch of Specialist Resources (September 23)

Working with partners across the sector and the UK, we have developed a suite of PowerPoint resources focusing on the different key areas of the CFVI. These resources can be used by specialists working with Children and Young People with Vision Impairment (CYPVI) in the field of VI education to support training to key stakeholders and to encourage and support the embedding of the CFVI within all settings. You can download these resources by visiting the 'Specialist Resources and Sensory Support Service Documents' section above.

Launch of Education Reports: Unlocking education for all (June 23)

The vision impairment education sector released new reports in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, entitled “Unlocking education for all, Curriculum Framework for Children and Young People with Vision Impairment (CFVI).” The reports highlight the importance of the CFVI and call for the Governments in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland to endorse and formally recognise the framework in policy across the UK. Read these reports at www.rnib.org.uk/cfvi

Launch of CFVI Policy Position Statements across the UK (February 23)

We want to ensure every child and young person with a vision impairment across the UK has equitable access to specialist support to enable them to effectively access their learning and to develop key skills required to live and work independently in adulthood. We launched our CFVI position statements across the UK to support awareness raising about the issues faced by CYPVI and detail how the CFVI can help support them in reaching their potential.

CFVI Update and Information Sharing Event (Nov 22)

Watch the video and learn more about the plans for the next 3 year phase of the CFVI project, which includes the evaluation of the CFVI in practice, the creation of specialist resources and guidance to support children and young people, parents and professionals to embed the CFVI in practice across the UK.

CFVI Live Q & A Session (May 22)

Following the hugely popular launch of the new Curriculum Framework for Children and Young People with Vision Impairment (CFVI) we held a live Q and A session to answer your questions.

CFVI Launch Event (March 22)

The live launch of the CFVI took place on Wednesday 15th March, hosted by BBC Broadcaster Peter White and featuring experts from education, health and habilitation across the UK.

Read our policy position statements on Education and the CFVI

We want to ensure every child and young person with a vision impairment across the UK has equitable access to specialist support to enable them to effectively access their learning and to develop key skills required to live and work independently in adulthood.

Read our CFVI position statement's to learn more about the issues faced by children and young people with a vision impairment and how the CFVI can help support them in reaching their potential.

New education reports: Unlocking education for all

The vision impairment education sector has released new reports in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, “Unlocking education for all, Curriculum Framework for Children and Young People with Vision Impairment (CFVI).”

Across the UK, inconsistencies in local provision mean many children and young people with a vision impairment do not have access to the specialist support they need. To address this, parents, children and young people, practitioners, charities, and experts at the University of Birmingham developed the Curriculum Framework for Children and Young People with Vision Impairment (CFVI). The framework sits alongside and is integrated with the academic curriculum.

The reports highlight the importance of the CFVI and call for the Governments in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland to endorse and formally recognise the framework in policy across the UK.

#UnlockingEducation for all: CFVI video case studies

As part of our campaign to embed the CFVI into policy, our partners at Thomas Pocklington Trust in collaboration with the University of Birmingham, have captured five case study videos featuring blind or partially sighted children and young people. Each short film tells the young person’s story in their own words and demonstrates the difference the CFVI could make to children and young people in the future.

Watch our young people case studies by visiting Thomas Pocklington Trust, CFVI: Policy and campaigning

How you can get involved!

Find out how you can support the CFVI from providing resources, providing case studies to supporting our evaluation of its use in practice. Download our guide and get in touch!

Download our guide