A NEWPORT school is “thrilled” to receive an award for its outstanding work with children who have visual and multi-sensory impairments.

Maes Ebbw School in Newport has been given a Vision Friendly Mark award – the first in Wales – for demonstrating its commitment to providing a vision-friendly environment that is inclusive of all children, especially those with vision impairments.

Teachers within the school have worked towards becoming qualified in vision impairment, where they can then assess a child’s vision and set targets for them.


Rebecca Jane Cochrane, and Jen Lovering, are vision leaders in the school and were the main forces behind making the changes within the school.

Among the changes were to introduce blackout tents, multisensory lights, a TV screen which the children can control with their eyes, braille across the school, decluttered corridors and displays and positive looking sessions – which support the development of those with limited skills, introduced by Positive Eye.

Also, all pupils now have ‘vision profiles’ which keep records on their eye condition, their eye range and what they can see, and how staff can support them in visual exploration.

The school has worked closely with both Gwent Sensory and Communication Support Unit (SenCom) and Positive Eye to ensure that the standards are high so that all pupils are getting the right support.

Gwyneth McCormack, director of Positive Eye, said: “This award is a celebration of the school’s commitment, passion and dedication.

“The staff have worked really hard and it’s been a great honour to work with the school”.