Special Education

Assistive Technology

"Learning For All" states that assistive technology is any technology that allows one to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of an individual with special learning needs. Its applications and adaptations can help open doors to previously inaccessible learning opportunities for many children with special needs.

The District School Board of Niagara has installed on all of our student computers the Premier Tools Accessibility Suite to allow all students a tool to achieve to the best of their abilities. This suite of programs allows the user to use tools such as word prediction, e-Text readers, text-to-audio and translators to assist in both reading and writing. Students are able to download this suite of programs for free enabling them to have a strong school-home-school connection. "Premier At Home" is available at 


Ontario Educational Software Service (OESS)

The Ontario Educational Software Service at TVO offers quality educational software and CD-ROMs to our schools. This software is recommended for licensing by the Ontario Software Acquisition Program Advisory Committee (OSAPAC) and licensed by the Ontario Ministry of Education. These programs come at no charge to our school board.

OESS provides software for all subject areas and grade levels. In some instances the use of more than one OESS software package can be combined to ensure success for the user.

OESS also offers keyboarding, word processing, desktop publishing, spreadsheet, database, accounting, and telecommunications software to prepare students for the work place once their school career with us is completed.

To learn more about OESS visit 


Special Equipment Amount (SEA) Claims

The Ministry of Education provides SEA funding to assist school boards with the cost of equipment essential to support students with special needs to access the Ontario curriculum or board determined program or to attend school. All equipment must be deemed essential and be recommended by a qualified professional. Some examples of equipment that can be purchased through a SEA Claim are FM Systems, ceiling lifts, specialized seating or communication devices. Assistive technology, such as computers and specialized software, may be provided for students with severe learning disabilities or students with physical needs when necessary to access the Ontario curriculum.

All referrals are processed by the SEA Committee. The District School Board of Niagara must assume the cost of $800 for each claim submitted to the Ministry of Education. Equipment purchased through a SEA claim is the property of DSBN.