RI Services to Children and Youth with Dual Sensory Impairments, also known as the DSI Project, is a federally funded grant designed to provide technical assistance to educational teams and families who serve learners with deaf-blindness (birth - 22 years old) in Rhode Island. Our Project goals include:
Collaborate with the medical, community, and infant toddler services to identify children with dual sensory impairments early so services can be provided to the child and family
Provide training to families and service providers who work with children with dual sensory impairments
Provide family and self-advocacy support
Assist families and educational teams access supports to maximize their child's independent living and help them prepare for times of transition
Maintain information on the Rhode Island census for the National Child Count
Project Definition of Dual Sensory Impairment
Dual Sensory Impairment means concomitant hearing and visual impairments, the combination of which causes such severe communication and other developmental and educational needs that they cannot be accommodated in special education programs solely for children with deafness or children with blindness. 34 CFR 300.8 (c) (2)
Who is Eligible for DSI Project Services?
Dual Sensory Impairment (deafblindness) can be characterized as low vision to complete blindness along with a mild hearing loss to profound deafness. The combination of the two sensory losses makes it challenging to implement typical educational strategies and approaches into the student's IEP.
Eligibility is determined by a review of a child's medical records, and through a conversation with a child's family and/or educational team. It is essential that the referral form be complete and accurate. A consent form must accompany the referral. Without complete and accurate information, it is possible that an individual who is eligible for the project could be determined ineligible and, thus, would not benefit from the project's services. In addition, the project is required to send yearly reports that require complete information for each individual involved with the project. (This information is submitted without the individual's name.)