Outreach Access Services

Statewide Services Reimagined

The Washington State School for the Blind Outreach Department is pleased to announce a significant expansion of statewide services in the 2023-24 school year. As our field grows in both size and scope, we recognize the need for diverse support that can be accessed by educators of students with blindness and low vision. This program is available to all educators throughout the state, and the services are free of charge. 

Our mission:

The mission of Outreach Access Services is to provide statewide support for all who educate learners with blindness and low vision ages birth to 21, to help provide quality resources and to increase access to equitable services in Washington. 

What we do: 

Need a hand in any of these areas?  Outreach Access Services Request Form

What's New

Teacher to teacher individual collaboration sessions

Are you looking to connect with another teacher of students with blindness and low vision?  Have a specific question to explore? Outreach Access Services is now offering individual teacher collaboration sessions via Zoom or over the phone. Sessions are available on numerous days and times. Sessions are currently with Kirsten Dlugo. Keep an eye out for additional times and teachers in the near future!

Schedule teacher to teacher collaboration

Sensing and Learning book study with co-author Stacey Chambers

Stacey Chambers sitting behind a blue Perkins Brailler

Sensing and Learning is a guidebook modified from the Sensory and Learning Kit (SLK) that expands on the responses to questions and issues raised by several teachers of learners with visual impairments (TVIs). The research-based strategies contained in this book provide TBLVLs with tools to conduct sensory efficiency and learning media assessments; address IEP areas such as instructional settings, accommodations, and goals; and provide highly effective instruction using a collaborative, consultation-service delivery model.

Dates: April 8, April 22, May 13, May 28, and June 11.

Time: 3:30-4:30 PST

The sessions will be recorded. WA clock hours and ACVREP credits will be available.

Registration is now closed.

The book is available on Quota Funds. The Quota-eligible print version of the text may take several weeks to arrive.

Purchase Sensing and Learning print edition

Purchase Sensing and Learning digital edition

Open hours for vision professionals

Open Hours are every Monday from 2:00-3:30pm, and every Wednesday from 7:30-9:00am until June 12th. This is an opportunity for anyone to hop on Zoom to ask questions, help problem solve, or just feel the love.

Monday afternoon open hours are hosted by Kathryn Kier.  She brings extensive experience and knowledge as a Teacher of Blind and Low Vision Learners and an O&M Specialist. Her insightful nature and knack for articulating the most difficult topics in our field has made her a mentor to many across the state.

Register for Monday afternoon 2:00-3:30 open hours here

Wednesday morning open hours are hosted by Kirsten Dlugo and Colleen Johnson. Both have been itinerant TSVIs with WSSB Outreach for many years. They have accumulated expertise in several areas, and for many they are the go-to for questions about learners with complex needs and cortical visual impairment.

Register for Wednesday morning 7:30-9:00am open hours here

Our team

The OAS team is made up of 9 educators with many decades of combined experience in educating students with blindness and low vision. They hold certifications in various specialties, including Teaching Students with Blindness and Low Vision (TSVI), Orientation and Mobility (O&M), and Certified Assistive Technology Instructional Specialists (CATIS). In addition, several teachers hold degrees and certifications in multiple areas across birth-21 special education. 


Teacher-to-teacher collaboration

Our field is extraordinarily broad in scope, with even experienced teachers finding it difficult to gain and maintain expertise in all areas of instruction and curriculum. The OAS team has specialized knowledge across the gamut of content areas. We’re thrilled to work with you to help make your students successful.  Request teacher-to-teacher collaboration

Professional development  

iOS 17—Navigating new accessibility features for users with blindness or low vision (SETC webinar)

Apple launched its iOS/iPadOS 17 last fall, marking one of the most significant steps forward in iOS accessibility over the last decade. Several new features in this update are particularly impactful for students with blindness or low vision. Join the Washington State School for the Blind Outreach AT Team for this informative webinar to explore these features and ways you can integrate them into your educational practices today. 

Mentorship & grant program 

Looking to join the amazing world of teaching students with blindness and low vision? Are you new to the field and would like some support? The OAS Mentor Program will help you get to where you want to be. We offer direct support, resources, and even grant funding. Visit the Mentorship & Grant Program web page and join the program that has launched the careers of over 40 new Washington TSVIs since 2017.

Access Technology & STEM 

Technology is a vast realm that evolves at extraordinary speeds. We can help you navigate the ever-changing possibilities by providing consultation, support, and professional development. Have a concern or need resources? Visit the OAS Access Technolgy & Stem web page or complete an Assistance Request form.

Student formal assessment in unserved districts 

The current demand for educators of students with blindness and low vision is extraordinary. Despite strong efforts to bring new teachers in the field, open positions can lie vacant. In these situations, maintaining student assessment schedules is vital. We’re here to help your district document student need by providing formal assessment services for vision and orientation and mobility free of charge. Request assistance for a formal assessment