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The Vision Support Service (VSS) and Hearing Support Service (HSS)

Information for children who need support with hearing and vision.

The VSS and HSS are two separate services, but operate in a similar way.

How do the services work?

The HSS works with children and young people with mild to profound hearing impairments. The VSS work with children and young people with mild to profound visual impairments.

Both services help by giving advice, training and sometimes direct teaching.

The services have a team of specialist Advisory Teachers with qualifications in visual or hearing impairment. All teachers can support:

  • children and young people
  • families
  • pre-schools
  • schools and colleges

Who do the services work with?

Both services work:

  • in partnership with parents and carers to agree support and involvement
  • with education, social care and health services
  • with one another*

* The HSS and VSS are together often referred to as the Hearing and Vision Support Services (HVSS).

Where do the services work? 

The services are available across Dorset, Bournemouth and Poole. They can work in:

  • family homes
  • playgroups and nurseries
  • schools and colleges

What else do the services offer?

Hearing Support Service

Within the HSS they also have:

  • an Educational Audiologist who works  closely with NHS Audiology Services 
  • a Sign Language Tutor who works and uses sign with the children, families and settings

Vision Support Service

Within the VSS they have:

  • Keyboarding Tutors
  • Mobility Officers
  • a technician

Equality and Diversity 

Both services ensure that children and young people with hearing and/or visual impairments:

  • have every opportunity to enjoy life in their communities
  • needs are met and respected

More information

Visit Dorset's Local Offer website (opens in a new window) for all services for children/young people with SEN and/or disabilities.

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