Located in the heart of Oakland, Pennsylvania, the Western Pennsylvania School for Blind Children is a one-of-a-kind educational facility committed to training visually impaired students with additional disabilities. The School also provides vital early intervention and outreach services to visually impaired students, with or without additional challenges, throughout western Pennsylvania.
Founded more than 120 years ago, no other agency in the western half of the Commonwealth is better equipped to care for and educate blind children with severe concomitant disabilities than the Western Pennsylvania School for Blind Children. Our unique facility and programming are tailored for boys and girls who require distinct educational and supportive services to realize their full potential.
As a private institution chartered by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the School educates approximately 175 students annually from 242 school districts within western Pennsylvania. Students may enroll at age three and they can continue until 21.
Our students benefit from the experience and expertise of staff who focus on helping students use their “residual” vision to the best of their ability. The curriculum emphasizes the acquisition of life skills. Certified teachers of the visually impaired and qualified therapists and health professionals collaborate on planning and implementing effective, individualized educational programs.
The School accepts students as young as age two, though many enroll in later years. A student can remain until the end of the school year when he or she turns twenty-one. Seventy-five percent of those who enroll will complete their education at the School
Residential facilities are available for those students who live in outlying districts. Some pre-school age students have a single disability of blindness and their early training will prepare them for eventually completing their education in a public school.
All programs and services are available without charge to the parents of students. The School receives an annual appropriation from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, with additional funding from foundation and corporation grants, individual contributions, the income from an endowment, and similar funds.