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Expanding education to students who are blind or visually impaired

Along with our partners at the Kansas State School for the Blind, we’ve developed a novel data set that is shaping policy and expanding services available throughout the state.‍

25%
Service expansion

KSSB have grown field services substantially across the state of Kansas to provide education where students need it.

Since 1868, the Kansas State School for the Blind (KSSB) has been a bastion of education for the nearly 3% of children who fall in the category of Blind or Visually Impaired(BVI).


Institutions like the KSSB are vital conduits for the teaching of Braille, independent living skills, and the mastery of assistive technology. With every successive class, these schools form a link between the BVI and the sighted world. Sadly, this link has never been more in danger than it is right now. 


Disabilities funding was on the decline long before the COVID-19 pandemic undermined the communal atmosphere of classrooms and forced cuts to the charitable giving that underwrites BVI schools. The current fiscal reality is loaded with grim prospects for a community that is already susceptible to significant gaps in education. 


Together with the Kansas State School for the Blind (KSSB) and its coalition partners, Akido Labs developed a program to shed light on the services BVI students are missing, and attract funding for these students’ unique educational needs as a result.


In order to illuminate the impact of the KSSB strategies and personnel on the lives of their students, the program established a novel dataset, gathered in real-time from teachers, students and their families via  a user-centered and accessible interface.

"Our program with Akido helps us be a forward-thinking school that can predict trends, as opposed to simply react to trends. This is a sea change for our school." - Jon Harding, Kansas State School for the Blind

Nine months after launching the program, the ground breaking dataset provided the impetus for KSSB to grow their services by as much as 25%, in support of the expansion of BVI services across the state of Kansas.



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