NDIS is the Australian National Disability Insurance Scheme - a new way of providing community linking and individualised support for people with permanent and significant disability, their families and carers. Visit the NDIS website
Update October 2020: The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) recently published their intention to introduce a process of ‘Independent Functional Assessments’ as part of the National Disability Insurance Scheme. There are concerns about the way this is being implemented, without consultation with people with disability or the advocacy sector. SPEVI would like to share the Position Statement of Blind Citizens Australia (BCA) as well as a letter from Deafblind Australia (DBA), in response to the proposed changes to the NDIS Assessments.
Read BCA’s position statement on Independent Assessments (link to the BCA website)
Read Deafblind Australia's letter to the Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (Word document).
SPEVI has selected a number of NDIS resources that may be relevant to SPEVI members and parents, carers and educators of children with vision impairment, in the context of the NDIS. These resources are published by the NDIA.
SPEVI VI-NDIS Working Group
Following concerns arising from (preparation for) the introduction of the NDIS with regards to young people with vision impairment, SPEVI installed the VI-NDIS working group. The aim of the SPEVI VI-NDIS working group is to establish and promote Best Practice in supporting the needs and best interest of children and young people with vision impairment within the context of the NDIS, on behalf of SPEVI. The working group offers its support to the NDIA to provide advice in the development of effective strategies and other consultancy to ensure that the NDIS meets the needs of children with vision impairment. Current members are Phia Damsma (Founder, Chair until July 2019), Sue Silveira, Kerri Weaver, Bronwen Scott, and Lynda Cameron. Please contact us if you would like to share your experiences or concerns regarding the NDIS, or to join the working group: email@example.com. The group is looking for a new Chair.
Information on submissions, publications and activities by this working group, can be found on the SPEVI VI-NDIS working group page.
SPEVI Position Statement on the role of the Specialist Teacher (Vision Impairment): Ensuring the best outcome for children with vision impairment
Compiled by the SPEVI VI-NDIS working group, February 2016.
Children with vision impairment deserve equity of access
Children with vision impairment are entitled to equity of access to all aspects of life as they choose. To achieve this they must be supported from the time that their vision impairment is diagnosed, as they travel on their educational journey, and throughout their life. Children with vision impairment need support and advocacy to achieve their goals in education and life. It is essential that professionals supporting them can guarantee reasonable adaptations, assistive technology, and accessible resources to facilitate their learning and development. Children with vision impairment are more often than not complex individuals, with multiple health issues and additional diagnoses. This makes it vital that professionals supporting these children are knowledgeable and willing to advocate for the rights of children to access all aspects of their community... Read more... or download the document SPEVI Position Statement on the role of the Specialist Teacher (Vision Impairment): Ensuring the best outcome for children with vision impairment.
SPEVI VI NDIS working group Position Paper (Accessible Word document)
SPEVI VI NDIS working group Position Paper (PDF File)
Published NDIS VI criteria
The NDIS website currently provides a “Factsheet- Evidence of your Disability”, which gives an indication of how vision impairment will be assessed. It will determine whether a person meets the disability or early intervention access requirements. The VI-NDIS – SPEVI working group is concerned about these criteria. We will keep pushing for change and advocating for improved assessment and interpretation of the severity of the impact of vision impairment on the individual’s functional vision.
Download the Factsheet here: NDIS Factsheet Evidence of Your Disability