Rutherford County Schools employs certified itinerant vision teachers who serve students in our system from age 3 to high school. RCS also employs a School Social Worker who serves as the vision coordinator for the county. The vision coordinator is the contact person for new referrals.

To qualify for vision services, the student must be certified as visually impaired or blind and show an educational need. Certification begins with a current eye report (within the past year) from the student’s eye care professional. If the eye report warrants further evaluation, parents will be contacted to proceed.

For those students who are eligible for vision services in our district, our teachers provide all services to students at their school of zone. Our vision department works collaboratively with the administration, general education teachers, and the special education teachers at the school to provide support that is needed at each school based on individual student needs.

Vision services do not include services for students with perceptual difficulties.

Orientation and mobility training (O & M) helps a blind or visually impaired student know where they are in space and where they want to go (orientation). It also helps them to be able to carry out a plan to get there (mobility). Orientation and mobility skills should begin to be developed in infancy starting with basic body awareness and movement, and continuing on into adulthood as the individual learns skills that allow him/her to navigate his/her world. 

Students are referred to a certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist by their teachers, staff, or parents for a screening to determine if a full evaluation of the student’s orientation and mobility skills is appropriate.  Services are provided on an as needed basis.