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The NSSEO Vision Program provides students with the necessary skills and supports to become confident, independent individuals who will succeed in a sighted world. We believe a collaborative partnership among students, families, educational teams, and community members are essential in providing expanded opportunities and improved outcomes for students.

Diagnostic & Educational
Service Center (DESC) 

Gillet Educational Center
201 South Evanston Road

Arlington Heights, IL 60004-6832
T | 847-463-8240
F | 847-463-8289

Program Supervisor: 
Cathy Kostecki

Administrative Assistant: 
Deborah Skoskiewicz
847-463-8273 |  dskoskie@nsseo.org

Focus ↓



The programs for the Visually Impaired (VI) provides services for students ages 3-21 with mild to severe vision impairments and blindness. Individual goals reflect the assessed needs of each student in the areas of core curricula impacted most significantly by the vision loss. Students are provided instruction in the use of specialized technology in order to access the curriculum, develop vocational and leisure skills, and support independence including travel. Services are provided for students whose vision impairment impacts their educational progress and interfere with their ability to access printed information within the school setting. Students with vision impairments are provided with specialized materials, technology, and equipment including: large print text books, Braille, auditory books, magnification, screen enlargement, and screen reading software.

Brochure →

Who We Are ↓

Who We Are


The certified/licensed staff is comprised of highly qualified special education Teachers of the Visually Impaired (TVI), Orientation and Mobility Specialists (O&M), and Activities of Daily Living (ADL) Specialists. Experienced staff provides direct and consultative services. The program provides an itinerant service to meet the needs of students with diagnosed vision impairments.

Services ↓


  • Lending library of all large print and Braille textbooks, adaptive equipment, technology, software, and curriculum materials
  • Access to the Illinois Instructional Material Center
  • Modifications and/or accommodations of materials
  • Coaching and consultation to support students in the learning environment
  • Functional Vision Assessments
  • Vision screenings
  • Low Vision Clinics
  • Clinics for hard to test students
  • Orientation and mobility training
  • Community-based educational experiences
  • Self help and independence training for all activities of daily life
  • Parent training
  • After school social club (VIP Club)

Contact Directory ↓

Contact Directory


Find Someone Who Can Assist You by Going to our Staff Directory → 

Forms ↓




Vision Clinics ↓

Vision Clinics


Low Vision Clinics are scheduled throughout the year for students with severe vision impairing disorders which cannot be corrected with medical treatment, surgery, conventional glasses or lenses. These statewide clinics are sponsored by the Lions of Illinois Foundation through their Seeing is Believing Program. The optometrist from the Chicago Lighthouse for the Blind who specializes in low vision provides a comprehensive visual evaluation. Upon completion of the evaluation, specially crafted optical devices are prescribed, including glasses, telescopes, magnifiers, and sun wear to maximize sight.

Difficult To Test Clinics  – NSSEO sponsors a limited number of Difficult-to-Test Vision Clinics each year. The clinics are designed to provide optometric examinations for students who are considered “difficult to test”. Many of the students served have a variety of other disabilities and may use alternative methods of communication. While these clinics are provided at no cost to parents, they should not be considered a source of yearly exams nor do they fund glasses or other equipment. Possible recommendations may include optimal visual positioning, a prescription for glasses, referral to the teacher of the visually impaired, or further testing.

Websites of Interests ↓

Websites of Interests