The American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) has released the Access and Engagement research report, the culmination of survey findings from 1,432 U.S. and Canadian participants who represented 455 children from birth to age 21 who have visual impairments, plus their families and professionals. The report highlights the challenges experienced in education in late spring 2020 as the shift was made from education in school buildings to remote education, or in some cases no education.

“Like it has in so many other facets of our lives, COVID-19 has had a tremendous impact on education of children with visual impairments, especially our youngest children, those with additional disabilities, and those who are deafblind” Dr. L. Penny Rosenblum, AFB director of research said. “The Access and Engagement study is allowing us to capture this historic time, but more importantly to use what we have learned, and will continue to learn through our next survey, to develop solutions to ensure all students have accessible, engaging, and inclusive educational opportunities.”

The survey resulted from a collaboration among 21 organizations and companies concerned about how COVID-19 is impacting education.