The California School for the Blind welcomed back students for in-person instruction to begin the 2021-2022 school year on Monday, August 23, 2021. We continue to implement best practices related to health and safety.
Visit the Distance Learning Resources page for the latest information and resources.
School Reopening Guidance Overview (PDF)
The California School for the Blind is located in Fremont, California and provides a multitude of services to blind and visually impaired children and young adults across the state. Formally established in 1922, the California School for the Blind (CSB) was originally located in Berkeley, California, and remains the only state-funded public school for the blind and visually impaired in California. For the in-depth history of how CSB came to be, visit the History of CSB page.
See the Myths and Facts about CSB (PDF) for more information.
There are no scheduled tours at CSB during this time. Our future tours will be announced under "Events" on our homepage.
On behalf of all staff at the California School for the Blind (CSB), I would like to welcome you to our website!
At the California School for the Blind, we believe that all blind and visually impaired students should be provided every opportunity to reach their full potential and become as independent as possible. This is achieved not only through intensive instruction in the Common Core Curriculum as well as the Expanded Core Curriculum, but also by letting students make mistakes, guiding them to step outside of their comfort zones, and supporting them so that they can feel safe enough to take risks and try new things. Only by letting students experience the world around them can we teach them to be independent. This philosophy runs deep within our school and influences all of the work we do with and for blind and visually impaired students.
The California School for the Blind is committed to providing a safe, nurturing environment where students can spread their wings and fly. We set high expectations for our students while providing them with the instruction, support, and encouragement they need to meet those expectations. For many students arriving at CSB for the first time, CSB represents their first-ever opportunity to be surrounded by blind and visually impaired peers and mentors. Many years ago, one of the first students I ever worked with at CSB, Derek, made a comment that has stuck with me over the years. When I began working with him within his first few days at CSB, Derek remarked, "This is the first time in my life that I have ever heard someone else's cane snapping together when it's time to go somewhere, instead of just my own cane. This is the first time I have heard someone else typing on a Braille Writer, instead of just me." He described how amazing it felt to finally be around other blind and visually impaired people, and described the sense of isolation he had felt before. It was then that I knew what an incredibly special place CSB is.
The vision of the California School for the Blind is to touch the lives of every blind and visually impaired student in California and beyond, whether it be through direct service, consultation, assessment, professional development for Teachers of the Visually Impaired, or specialized training for families. With innovative on-campus programming and a thriving Outreach department, we are well on our way to achieving this goal. Whether you are seeking information about how to enroll a student at CSB, how to get an assessment or technical assistance, where to find state and local resources, or how you can better support a student with blindness or a visual impairment, we hope you find it here. Our website has been newly redesigned to provide accessible, up-to-date information and resources for students, families, teachers, and community members. If you can't find what you're looking for, don't hesitate to give us a call - We are here for you!
Thank you again for stopping by the California School for the Blind website. We look forward to working with you.
Gina E. Ouellette
California School for the Blind
The intent and values of the California School for the Blind (CSB).
The California School for the Blind provides intensive, disability-specific educational services to students who have primary learning needs related to their visual impairment. The school serves as a statewide resource to provide expertise to Local Education Agencies (LEAs) and families in evidenced based assessment, specialized curriculum, cutting-edge research and technology, and innovative models of instruction that prepare students for adult life.
In partnership with Local Education Agencies (LEAs), families, students, and community constituents, the California School for the Blind strives to create an atmosphere where high expectations and mutual respect between all staff and students is valued to ensure positive outcomes for academic and life skills success in a technologically-advanced society.
The California School for the Blind community believes:
- Students with visual impairments who are enrolled at or receive services and support from the California School for the Blind need to be given the skills necessary to reach their highest potential academically and socially whether through high school graduation or through the acquisition of functional life skills.
- Students need to be exposed to and participate in a wide range of experiential learning opportunities to maximize the potential for academic competence and independence.
- Respect and equality for all individuals in on-campus and in outreach programs supports an atmosphere of empowerment and life-long learning.
- Students deserve an educational environment that maintains high expectations for student performance at all times.
- Students deserve on-going opportunities to prepare for adult life through specialized instruction in career development, independent living skills, assistive technology, and social skills.
- Students deserve highly trained and certified professionals who are life-long learners and seek to promote excellence and innovation in every aspect of their work.
Student Learner Outcomes
- Each student enrolled at the California School for the Blind will be provided with the necessary equipment, curricular tools, and skills needed to achieve his or her highest academic potential through the acquisition of the California Common Core Standards.
- Each student enrolled at the California School for the Blind will receive intense instruction in all areas of the Expanded Core Curriculum including compensatory skills, career development, daily living skills, orientation & mobility, recreation and leisure skills, self-determination skills, sensory efficiency skills, social and emotional skills, and assistive technology skills by achieving at least 50% of the Expanded Core Curriculum (ECC) benchmarks on the ECC Minimum Standards.
- Each student enrolled at the California School for the Blind will demonstrate self-advocacy and self-determination skills to promote proactive decision-making and problem-solving skills in home, school, and community settings.
- Each student enrolled at the California School for the Blind will be provided with experiences related to the arts including music and art.
- Each student enrolled at the California School for the Blind will demonstrate respect and responsibility for oneself and others by showing kindness and dignity toward staff and students.