,

Who are people with vision loss?

Individuals with diseases of the eye such as:

  • Cataracts – Clouding of the eye lens that causes loss of vision;
  • Glaucoma – Pressure inside the eye is elevated causing damage to the optic nerve resulting in loss of peripheral vision;
  • Macular Degeneration – Disturbance of blood vessels in the eye resulting in progressive loss of central vision;
  • Retinitis Pigmentosa – Degeneration of pigment in the eye leading to tunnel vision and night blindness, and
  • Retinopathy – Blotchy vision suffered by diabetics, caused by poor blood circulation in the retina.
,

What types of assistance are used by people with visual loss?

Types of assistance include:

  • Optical devices such as monoculars, binocular systems or prism spectacles;
  • Laptops with speech output or Braille display;
  • Lighted pens;
  • Magnifiers;
  • White canes;
  • Guide dogs, and
  • Support persons.
,

What are some good ways to interact and communicate with people with vision loss?

  • Don’t assume the person cannot see you. Very few people have total vision loss.
  • Identify yourself before touching the person.
  • Describe where you are and where the other person is, using landmarks and any other details for orientation.
  • Offer your arm as a guide, but first ask permission.
  • If the person is using a guide dog, don’t touch or speak to the dog as it is doing essential
  • work. Any distraction could limit the dog’s effectiveness.
  • Don’t leave the person in the middle of a room. Always guide the person to a chair or other comfortable location.
  • Always say good-bye or otherwise verbally indicate you are leaving.
,

Who are people with hearing loss?

They are:

  • Deaf – Individuals with severe hearing loss and little, if any, residual hearing. Some deaf people use sign language, such as American Sign Language or Langue des signes quebecoise (LSQ) to communicate.
  • Deafened or late-deafened – Individuals who grow up hearing or hard of hearing and, either suddenly or gradually, experience a profound loss of hearing in adulthood.
  • Culturally Deaf – Individuals who identify with and participate in the language, culture and community of Deaf people, based on sign language. Deaf culture perceives hearing loss from a socio-cultural point of view, indicated by a capital D as in “Deaf culture”.
  • Oral deaf – Individuals who were born deaf or became deaf before learning to speak.
  • Hard of hearing – Individuals who use their residual hearing and speech to communicate. The term “person with hearing loss” is increasingly used and preferred.

Source: The Canadian Hearing Society 

,

What types of assistance are used by people with hearing loss?

Types of assistance include:

  • Hearing aids;
  • Pocket talkers – Portable one-to-one communication devices. The speaker talks into the lapel microphone worn by the listener. The sound is then carried directly to a headset;
  • Phone amplifiers – available to augment the sound on a conventional phone;
  • TTYs – Telephones consisting of a keyboard and small display allowing typed communication over a phone line;
  • Relay services;
  • E-mail technology, including E-paging, and
  • Support persons such as sign language interpreters.
,

What are some good ways to interact and communicate with people with hearing loss?

  • Gently attract the person’s attention before speaking.
  • Make and maintain eye contact.
  • Speak clearly and keep your hands away from your face. Many people read lips.
  • If you are not understood, rephrase rather than repeat.
  • Write down key phrases and words. Be patient.
  • Take advantage of technical devices that improve communication, eg., pocket talkers.
  • If a support person is present, talk directly to the person with hearing loss,
    not the support person. 
,

Who are people who are deafblind?

Most people who are deafblind have a combination of vision and hearing loss. About
half of deafblind people have a genetic condition which results in being born deaf or hard of hearing. Later in life they lose their vision from retinitis pigmentosa.

Other common causes of deafblindness include:

  • Birth trauma;
  • Optic nerve disease;
  • Cataracts;
  • Glaucoma;
  • Macular degeneration, and
  • Diabetic retinopathy.

 

Source: American Association of the Deaf-Blind

,

What types of assistance are used by people who are deafblind?

Types of assistance include:

  • Braille TTY’s;
  • TTY’s with large print displays;
  • Braille or large print watches;
  • Hearing aids with built-in FM systems;
  • Magnifiers;
  • White canes;
  • Support persons, and
  • Service animals.
,

What are some good ways to interact and communicate with people who are deafblind?

  • If the deafblind person is accompanied by a support person, identify yourself to the support person, but then speak to the deafblind person directly as you would to anyone else.
  • A person who is deafblind may take the initiative, explaining how best to communicate. He or she may offer you an assistance card with communication tips.
  • If the deafblind person uses a service animal, do not touch or speak to the animal, as it is working and should not be distracted.
  • Ask permission before touching a deafblind person.
,

Who are people with physical disabilities?

There are many reasons why a person may have a physical disability affecting their ability to move, stand or sit.

 

These include:

  • Spinal cord injury;
  • Multiple sclerosis;
  • Muscular dystrophy;
  • Cerebral palsy;
  • Limb amputation;
  • Heart and stroke disease and
  • Arthritis.
,

What types of assistance are used by people with physical disabilities?

  • Wheelchairs;
  • Walkers;
  • Canes;
  • Scooters;
  • Elevators;
  • Crutches, and
  • Support people.
,

What are some good ways to interact and communicate with people with physical disabilities?

  • Always ask before offering to help a person using a wheelchair. If your offer is accepted, the person will usually clarify what help is needed.
  • Relax and speak naturally.
  • If you need to talk for more than a few minutes with a person using a wheelchair, consider sitting down in a chair next to them. This will facilitate eye contact and let the
    conversation continue more smoothly.
  • Let the person in the wheelchair know about accessible features nearby. These may include accessible washrooms, automatic doors elevators or ramps.
  • After a conversation with a person in a wheelchair, ensure the person is not left in an awkward, dangerous or undignified position, such as facing a wall or in the path of pedestrian traffic.
  • Make sure the person’s personal items or equipment, such as canes or walkers, are always within reach.
,

Who are people with learning disabilities?

  • Learning disabilities affect a person’s ability to understand verbal or non-verbal information. These include understanding or using spoken or written language. Other affected abilities include doing math, coordinating movements or focusing attention.

    Examples include

    • Dyslexia – Individuals with abnormal visual , auditory or motor processes interfering with reading and reading comprehension. They may also have difficulties with learning to easily translate printed words into spoken words.
    • Dyscalculia – Individuals who have difficulty with numbers, for example, aligning numbers into proper columns. Some people may reverse numbers and have difficulty doing math.
    • Dysgraphia – Individuals having difficulty with handwriting. Some people have illegible handwriting with irregular and inconsistent letter formations. Others write legibly, but very slowly, or very small. In all cases, writing requires inordinate time and energy.
  • More examples of people with learning disabilities.

    • Dyspraxia – Individuals having problems with brain messages being improperly sent to the body, causing speech problems, poor posture or sense of directions.
    • Auditory Perceptual Deficit – Individuals having difficulty understanding and remembering oral instructions, or telling the difference between similar sounds.
    • Visual Perceptual Deficit – Individuals having difficulty picking out an object from a background of other objects or seeing things in correct order.

     

    Source: National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

  • What types of assistive devices are used by people with learning disabilities?

    Devices include:

    • Optical Character Recognition (OCR) which reads aloud scanned computer documents;
    • Electronic and talking dictionaries;
    • Software programs assisting with spelling, reading and grammar;
    • Talking calculators;
    • Electronic calendars;
    • Voice activated recorders, and
    • Reading pens that scan words and provide auditory feedback.
  • What are some good ways to interact and communicate with people with learning disabilities?

    • If you need to give a person with a learning disability written material, make sure the material uses larger print and is double spaced.
    • Encourage the person to use any communication devices they bring with them, including specially equipped personal computers or voice activated recorders.
    • If the person needs to do any mathematical calculations, appropriate calculators should be provided, including large display.
    • If the person needs to remember anything after a meeting, provide written checklists or to-do lists.
    • Be patient and supportive.
  • What types of assistance are used by people with mental health disabilities?

    • Support persons;
    • Portable music listening devices;
    • Electronic organizers, and
    • Service animals.
  • Who are people with mental health disabilities?

    Mental disorders are medical conditions that impair thinking, feeling and behaviour. They interfere with a person’s capacity to be productive and enjoy fulfilling relationships.

    Common examples include:

    • Major depression – A serious illnesses that affecting a person’s mood, concentration, sleep activity, appetite, social behaviour and feelings;
    • Bipolar disorder – A disorder involving periods of extreme, positive feeling alternating with depression;
    • Schizophrenia – A severe, chronic disorder impairing a person’s ability to think clearly, manage emotions, make decisions and relate to others;
    • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) – A condition that can occur after exposure to a terrifying event or ordeal in which grave physical harm occurred or was threatened;
    • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) – An anxiety disorder characterized by recurrent unwanted thoughts and/or repetitive behaviour;
    • Anxiety disorders – These include panic disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and phobias.

     

    Source: Canadian Mental Health Association

  • What are some good ways to interact and communicate with people with mental health disabilities?

    • Eliminate as many distractions as possible.
    • Praise, reinforce and reassure.
    • Be patient and supportive.
    • Provide written checklists.
    • If someone appears to be in crisis, ask him or her for the best way you can help.
    • If the person is using a service animal, do not touch or speak to the animal as it is working and needs to pay attention at all times.
  • Who are people with intellectual or developmental disabilities?

    People with intellectual or developmental impairments may have significantly below-average-IQ. They may have problems with communication, self care and getting along in work, school or social situations.

    Causes of intellectual or developmental disabilities include:

    • Down Syndrome;
    • Fetal Alcohol Syndrome;
    • Serious head injury;
    • Stroke, and
    • Infections such as meningitis.

     

    Source: Center for Disease Control and Prevention

  • What types of assistance are used by people with intellectual or developmental disabilities?

    Types of assistance include:

    • Voice-activated recorders;
    • Large-display calculators;
    • Alarm watches and beepers;
    • Support persons, and
    • Service animals.
  • What are some good ways to interact and communicate with people with intellectual or developmental disabilities?

    • Be patient and supportive.
    • Ask the person if they can read any written information you give them. If not, ask if you can read it to them.
    • If the person needs to remember any information you give them, provide checklists or to do lists. Audiotapes are helpful.
    • If the person is accompanied by a support person, talk directly to the person with the disability, not the support person.
    • If the person is using a service animal, do not touch or speak to the animal, as it is working and should not be distracted. 
  • Who are people with speech or language impairments?

    Limitations in speech or language may be due to problems with articulation, voice strength or language expression. They may also be non-vocal.

    Speech and language disorders include:

    • Aphasia – Impaired expression or comprehension of written or spoken language caused by stroke, brain injury or Alzheimer’s dementia;
    • Dysarthria – Difficulty pronouncing words like “cat” or sounds like “sh” and “ba”;
    • Dysphonias – One type produces a strained or strangled voice quality. Another type sounds like chronic hoarseness or breathy, laboured speech;
    • Stuttering – Results in repetition, blocks or inability to say certain words;
    • Nodules – Speech may be hoarse, breathy and painful to produce.

     

    Source: American Speech Language Hearing Association

  • What types of assistance are used by people with speech or language impairments?

    Types of assistance include:

     

    • Portable speech amplifiers;
    • Pen and paper;
    • Computer with speech output software and/or word prediction software, and
    • Support persons.
  • What are some good ways to communicate or interact with people with speech or language impairments?

    • Be patient. Don’t complete their words or phrases for them.
    • If possible, ask questions that can be answered “yes” or “no”.
    • Concentrate on the content of the conversation, not the delivery.
    • Communicate as naturally as you can.
  • Policies, Practices and Procedures

    In meeting the requirements of the Accessible Standards for Customer Service, the School Board will:

    • Use reasonable efforts to ensure our policies, practices and procedures follow the principles of dignity, independence, equality of opportunity and integration.
    • Set practices that cover the use by persons with disabilities of their own assistive devices to access the Board’s services or any other measures the Board offers to enable an individual access to the services.
    • Communicate with a person with a disability in a manner that takes into account the person’s disability.
    • If a person with a disability is accompanied by a support person, the Board will ensure that both people are permitted to enter the Board’s facilities together and that the person with a disability is not prevented from having access to the support person while on the Board’s premises.
  • Policies, Practices and Procedures

    • If a person with a disability is accompanied by a guide dog or other service animal, the Board will ensure that the person is permitted to enter the Board’s facilities with the guide dog or other service animal and to keep the animal with him or her, unless the animal is not allowed by law in any area of the facility.
    • If there is a temporary disruption in the Board’s services or facilities generally used by persons with disabilities, the Board will give notice of the disruption to the public, in accordance with Board policies and procedures.
    • All staff, volunteers and third parties who interact with the public on behalf of the Board will receive accessibility training.  
    • Every person who participates in developing the Board’s policies, practices and procedures in the services the Board provides to people with disabilities will receive accessibility training.
    • There will be a process for receiving and responding to feedback about the manner in which the Board provides its services to persons with disabilities, and information about the process will be readily available to the public.
    • If an amount is payable by a person for admission to a school or Board event, or in connection with a person’s presence at a school or Board event, the Board shall ensure that advance notice is given of the amount, if any, that is payable by a support person.
  • Accessibility Customer Service Policy: 1

    Commitment to Accessibility

    All people, regardless of disability, have equal right of access to all goods and services provided by the BHNCDSB. Services will be provided in a manner that:

    • Maintains the dignity, autonomy, respect, privacy and safety of persons with disabilities.
    • Is inclusive, sensitive and responsive to their unique needs.

    ​Training

    • All Board staff and volunteers will receive accessibility awareness training.
    • Records will be kept to document training.

    Service Animals, Support Persons and Assistive Devices

    • The presence and use of accessibility support persons, service animals and assistive devices are embraced, with consideration taken for safety, security and privacy.

     

  • Accessible Customer Service Policy: 2

     

    Feedback

    • Concerns related to accessibility shall be reported to the Executive Assistant to the Director of Education in accordance with the procedures outlined in the Accessibly: Customer Service Standards policy.
    • Customer feedback mechanisms will provide an accessible process to obtain, document, consider and take necessary action on feedback and/or complaints. Trends will be reviewed on an annual basis and reported to the Board’s Accessibility Steering Committee.
    • In the event of a planned service disruption, notification will be provided in advance, within a reasonable timeframe. Appropriate alternative services will be noted when available.
    • In the event of unplanned service disruption, notification will be provided as soon as possible after the disruption occurs.
    • Notices of disruption shall include:
      • The name of the event/service
      • The service location
      • Alternate service locations if available
      • Contact information
  • Accessibility in BHNCDSB

    Persons with disabilities may use their own personal assistive devices, support persons and service animals to access school, and Board facilities.

    Persons with disabilities who require specific services are encouraged to contact the facility they wish to visit in advance to determine what services are, or can be, made available.

    Support Persons

    Support persons accompanying a person with a disability are welcome in all school and Board facilities. Support persons will not be charged entrance fees for school or Board sponsored events. Access will be in accordance with normal security procedures and all Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy legislation and procedures.

    Service Animals

,

More examples of people with learning disabilities.

    • Dyspraxia – Individuals having problems with brain messages being improperly sent to the body, causing speech problems, poor posture or sense of directions.
    • Auditory Perceptual Deficit – Individuals having difficulty understanding and remembering oral instructions, or telling the difference between similar sounds.
    • Visual Perceptual Deficit – Individuals having difficulty picking out an object from a background of other objects or seeing things in correct order.

     

    Source: National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

,

What types of assistive devices are used by people with learning disabilities?

Devices include:

  • Optical Character Recognition (OCR) which reads aloud scanned computer documents;
  • Electronic and talking dictionaries;
  • Software programs assisting with spelling, reading and grammar;
  • Talking calculators;
  • Electronic calendars;
  • Voice activated recorders, and
  • Reading pens that scan words and provide auditory feedback.
,

What are some good ways to interact and communicate with people with learning disabilities?

  • If you need to give a person with a learning disability written material, make sure the material uses larger print and is double spaced.
  • Encourage the person to use any communication devices they bring with them, including specially equipped personal computers or voice activated recorders.
  • If the person needs to do any mathematical calculations, appropriate calculators should be provided, including large display.
  • If the person needs to remember anything after a meeting, provide written checklists or to-do lists.
  • Be patient and supportive.
,

Who are people with vision loss?

Individuals with diseases of the eye such as:

  • Cataracts – Clouding of the eye lens that causes loss of vision;
  • Glaucoma – Pressure inside the eye is elevated causing damage to the optic nerve resulting in loss of peripheral vision;
  • Macular Degeneration – Disturbance of blood vessels in the eye resulting in progressive loss of central vision;
  • Retinitis Pigmentosa – Degeneration of pigment in the eye leading to tunnel vision and night blindness, and
  • Retinopathy – Blotchy vision suffered by diabetics, caused by poor blood circulation in the retina.
,

What types of assistance are used by people with mental health disabilities?

  • Support persons;
  • Portable music listening devices;
  • Electronic organizers, and
  • Service animals.
,

What are some good ways to interact and communicate with people with mental health disabilities?

  • Eliminate as many distractions as possible.
  • Praise, reinforce and reassure.
  • Be patient and supportive.
  • Provide written checklists.
  • If someone appears to be in crisis, ask him or her for the best way you can help.
  • If the person is using a service animal, do not touch or speak to the animal as it is working and needs to pay attention at all times.
,

Who are people with intellectual or developmental disabilities?

Who are people with intellectual or developmental disabilities?

People with intellectual or developmental impairments may have significantly below-average-IQ. They may have problems with communication, self care and getting along in work, school or social situations.

Causes of intellectual or developmental disabilities include:

  • Down Syndrome;
  • Fetal Alcohol Syndrome;
  • Serious head injury;
  • Stroke, and
  • Infections such as meningitis.

 

Source: Center for Disease Control and Prevention

,

What types of assistance are used by people with intellectual or developmental disabilities?

Types of assistance include:

  • Voice-activated recorders;
  • Large-display calculators;
  • Alarm watches and beepers;
  • Support persons, and
  • Service animals.
,

What are some good ways to interact and communicate with people with intellectual or developmental disabilities?

  • Be patient and supportive.
  • Ask the person if they can read any written information you give them. If not, ask if you can read it to them.
  • If the person needs to remember any information you give them, provide checklists or to do lists. Audiotapes are helpful.
  • If the person is accompanied by a support person, talk directly to the person with the disability, not the support person.
  • If the person is using a service animal, do not touch or speak to the animal, as it is working and should not be distracted. 
,

Who are people with speech or language impairments?

Limitations in speech or language may be due to problems with articulation, voice strength or language expression. They may also be non-vocal.

Speech and language disorders include:

  • Aphasia – Impaired expression or comprehension of written or spoken language caused by stroke, brain injury or Alzheimer’s dementia;
  • Dysarthria – Difficulty pronouncing words like “cat” or sounds like “sh” and “ba”;
  • Dysphonias – One type produces a strained or strangled voice quality. Another type sounds like chronic hoarseness or breathy, laboured speech;
  • Stuttering – Results in repetition, blocks or inability to say certain words;
  • Nodules – Speech may be hoarse, breathy and painful to produce.

 

Source: American Speech Language Hearing Association

,

What types of assistance are used by people with speech or language impairments?

  • Types of assistance include:

     

    • Portable speech amplifiers;
    • Pen and paper;
    • Computer with speech output software and/or word prediction software, and
    • Support persons.
  • What are some good ways to communicate or interact with people with speech or language impairments?

    • Be patient. Don’t complete their words or phrases for them.
    • If possible, ask questions that can be answered “yes” or “no”.
    • Concentrate on the content of the conversation, not the delivery.
    • Communicate as naturally as you can.
  • Policies, Practices and Procedures

    In meeting the requirements of the Accessible Standards for Customer Service, the School Board will:

    • Use reasonable efforts to ensure our policies, practices and procedures follow the principles of dignity, independence, equality of opportunity and integration.
    • Set practices that cover the use by persons with disabilities of their own assistive devices to access the Board’s services or any other measures the Board offers to enable an individual access to the services.
    • Communicate with a person with a disability in a manner that takes into account the person’s disability.
    • If a person with a disability is accompanied by a support person, the Board will ensure that both people are permitted to enter the Board’s facilities together and that the person with a disability is not prevented from having access to the support person while on the Board’s premises.
  • Policies, Practices and Procedures

    • If a person with a disability is accompanied by a guide dog or other service animal, the Board will ensure that the person is permitted to enter the Board’s facilities with the guide dog or other service animal and to keep the animal with him or her, unless the animal is not allowed by law in any area of the facility.
    • If there is a temporary disruption in the Board’s services or facilities generally used by persons with disabilities, the Board will give notice of the disruption to the public, in accordance with Board policies and procedures.
    • All staff, volunteers and third parties who interact with the public on behalf of the Board will receive accessibility training.  
    • Every person who participates in developing the Board’s policies, practices and procedures in the services the Board provides to people with disabilities will receive accessibility training.
    • There will be a process for receiving and responding to feedback about the manner in which the Board provides its services to persons with disabilities, and information about the process will be readily available to the public.
    • If an amount is payable by a person for admission to a school or Board event, or in connection with a person’s presence at a school or Board event, the Board shall ensure that advance notice is given of the amount, if any, that is payable by a support person.
  • Accessibility Customer Service Policy: 1

    Commitment to Accessibility

    All people, regardless of disability, have equal right of access to all goods and services provided by the BHNCDSB. Services will be provided in a manner that:

    • Maintains the dignity, autonomy, respect, privacy and safety of persons with disabilities.
    • Is inclusive, sensitive and responsive to their unique needs.

    ​Training

    • All Board staff and volunteers will receive accessibility awareness training.
    • Records will be kept to document training.

    Service Animals, Support Persons and Assistive Devices

    • The presence and use of accessibility support persons, service animals and assistive devices are embraced, with consideration taken for safety, security and privacy.

     

  • Accessible Customer Service Policy: 2

     

    Feedback

    • Concerns related to accessibility shall be reported to the Executive Assistant to the Director of Education in accordance with the procedures outlined in the Accessibly: Customer Service Standards policy.
    • Customer feedback mechanisms will provide an accessible process to obtain, document, consider and take necessary action on feedback and/or complaints. Trends will be reviewed on an annual basis and reported to the Board’s Accessibility Steering Committee.
    • In the event of a planned service disruption, notification will be provided in advance, within a reasonable timeframe. Appropriate alternative services will be noted when available.
    • In the event of unplanned service disruption, notification will be provided as soon as possible after the disruption occurs.
    • Notices of disruption shall include:
      • The name of the event/service
      • The service location
      • Alternate service locations if available
      • Contact information
  • Accessibility in BHNCDSB

    Persons with disabilities may use their own personal assistive devices, support persons and service animals to access school, and Board facilities.

    Persons with disabilities who require specific services are encouraged to contact the facility they wish to visit in advance to determine what services are, or can be, made available.

    Support Persons

    Support persons accompanying a person with a disability are welcome in all school and Board facilities. Support persons will not be charged entrance fees for school or Board sponsored events. Access will be in accordance with normal security procedures and all Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy legislation and procedures.

    Service Animals

    A person with a disability who has a service animal is welcome in schools and Board facilities. Access will be in accordance with normal security procedures. This requirement applies only to those areas of the premises when public or third parties customarily have access.

  • Accessible Services Available

    Some of the Board’s schools have: accessible elevators, automatic doors, accessible washrooms, designated parking and access to other services.

    Persons with disabilities are encouraged to contact the school in advance to determine what services are available to persons with disabilities. 

  • Resources and Feedback

    All concerns related to accessibility shall be reported to the Executive Assistant to the Director of Education.

    A Customer Feedback Form, to request information or services, make a suggestion or register a complaint about accessibility will be available at all Board facilities and on-line. Procedures for using the form can be found in the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service Handbook. Feedback will be reviewed on an annual basis by the Board’s Accessibility Steering Committee.

    For further information re

,

What are some good ways to communicate or interact with people with speech or language impairments?

  • Be patient. Don’t complete their words or phrases for them.
  • If possible, ask questions that can be answered “yes” or “no”.
  • Concentrate on the content of the conversation, not the delivery.
  • Communicate as naturally as you can.
,

Policies, Practices and Procedures

In meeting the requirements of the Accessible Standards for Customer Service, the School Board will:

  • Use reasonable efforts to ensure our policies, practices and procedures follow the principles of dignity, independence, equality of opportunity and integration.
  • Set practices that cover the use by persons with disabilities of their own assistive devices to access the Board’s services or any other measures the Board offers to enable an individual access to the services.
  • Communicate with a person with a disability in a manner that takes into account the person’s disability.
  • If a person with a disability is accompanied by a support person, the Board will ensure that both people are permitted to enter the Board’s facilities together and that the person with a disability is not prevented from having access to the support person while on the Board’s premises.
,

Policies, Practices and Procedures

  • If a person with a disability is accompanied by a guide dog or other service animal, the Board will ensure that the person is permitted to enter the Board’s facilities with the guide dog or other service animal and to keep the animal with him or her, unless the animal is not allowed by law in any area of the facility.
  • If there is a temporary disruption in the Board’s services or facilities generally used by persons with disabilities, the Board will give notice of the disruption to the public, in accordance with Board policies and procedures.
  • All staff, volunteers and third parties who interact with the public on behalf of the Board will receive accessibility training.  
  • Every person who participates in developing the Board’s policies, practices and procedures in the services the Board provides to people with disabilities will receive accessibility training.
  • There will be a process for receiving and responding to feedback about the manner in which the Board provides its services to persons with disabilities, and information about the process will be readily available to the public.
  • If an amount is payable by a person for admission to a school or Board event, or in connection with a person’s presence at a school or Board event, the Board shall ensure that advance notice is given of the amount, if any, that is payable by a support person.
,

Accessibility Customer Service Policy: 1

Commitment to Accessibility

All people, regardless of disability, have equal right of access to all goods and services provided by the BHNCDSB. Services will be provided in a manner that:

  • Maintains the dignity, autonomy, respect, privacy and safety of persons with disabilities.
  • Is inclusive, sensitive and responsive to their unique needs.

​Training

  • All Board staff and volunteers will receive accessibility awareness training.
  • Records will be kept to document training.

Service Animals, Support Persons and Assistive Devices

  • The presence and use of accessibility support persons, service animals and assistive devices are embraced, with consideration taken for safety, security and privacy.
,

Accessible Customer Service Policy: 2

Feedback

  • Concerns related to accessibility shall be reported to the Executive Assistant to the Director of Education in accordance with the procedures outlined in the Accessibly: Customer Service Standards policy.
  • Customer feedback mechanisms will provide an accessible process to obtain, document, consider and take necessary action on feedback and/or complaints. Trends will be reviewed on an annual basis and reported to the Board’s Accessibility Steering Committee.
  • In the event of a planned service disruption, notification will be provided in advance, within a reasonable timeframe. Appropriate alternative services will be noted when available.
  • In the event of unplanned service disruption, notification will be provided as soon as possible after the disruption occurs.
  • Notices of disruption shall include:
    • The name of the event/service
    • The service location
    • Alternate service locations if available
    • Contact information
,

Accessibility in BHNCDSB

Persons with disabilities may use their own personal assistive devices, support persons and service animals to access school, and Board facilities.

Persons with disabilities who require specific services are encouraged to contact the facility they wish to visit in advance to determine what services are, or can be, made available.

Support Persons

Support persons accompanying a person with a disability are welcome in all school and Board facilities. Support persons will not be charged entrance fees for school or Board sponsored events. Access will be in accordance with normal security procedures and all Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy legislation and procedures.

Service Animals

A person with a disability who has a service animal is welcome in schools and Board facilities. Access will be in accordance with normal security procedures. This requirement applies only to those areas of the premises when public or third parties customarily have access.

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Accessible Services Available

Some of the Board’s schools have: accessible elevators, automatic doors, accessible washrooms, designated parking and access to other services.

Persons with disabilities are encouraged to contact the school in advance to determine what services are available to persons with disabilities. 

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Resources and Feedback

All concerns related to accessibility shall be reported to the Executive Assistant to the Director of Education.

A Customer Feedback Form, to request information or services, make a suggestion or register a complaint about accessibility will be available at all Board facilities and on-line. Procedures for using the form can be found in the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service Handbook. Feedback will be reviewed on an annual basis by the Board’s Accessibility Steering Committee.

For further information related to accessibility at the BHNCDSB, please contact Chris Roehrig, Director Education (519-756-6505 Ext. 223).

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Click here to take the Accessibility Standards Training Course Quiz

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Who are people with vision loss?

Individuals with diseases of the eye such as:

  • Cataracts – Clouding of the eye lens that causes loss of vision;
  • Glaucoma – Pressure inside the eye is elevated causing damage to the optic nerve resulting in loss of peripheral vision;
  • Macular Degeneration – Disturbance of blood vessels in the eye resulting in progressive loss of central vision;
  • Retinitis Pigmentosa – Degeneration of pigment in the eye leading to tunnel vision and night blindness, and
  • Retinopathy – Blotchy vision suffered by diabetics, caused by poor blood circulation in the retina.
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What types of assistance are used by people with visual loss?

Types of assistance include:

  • Optical devices such as monoculars, binocular systems or prism spectacles;
  • Laptops with speech output or Braille display;
  • Lighted pens;
  • Magnifiers;
  • White canes;
  • Guide dogs, and
  • Support persons.
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Resources and Feedback

All concerns related to accessibility shall be reported to the Executive Assistant to the Director of Education.

A Customer Feedback Form, to request information or services, make a suggestion or register a complaint about accessibility will be available at all Board facilities and on-line. Procedures for using the form can be found in the Accessibility Standards for Customer Service Handbook. Feedback will be reviewed on an annual basis by the Board’s Accessibility Steering Committee.

For further information related to accessibility at the BHNCDSB, please contact Chris Roehrig, Director Education (519-756-6505 Ext. 223).

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