IT Carlow to get sensory room and accessibility software for students with disabilities

Leinster Express Reporter

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Institute of Technology Carlow is to receive funding for a number of strategic initiatives to provide greater access and engagement for its students with a disability.

Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris TD has announced the allocation to IT Carlow of over €52,000 for the provision of a sensory room to provide a calm and private space for students with autism.

The college says the funding also includes provision for additional assistive technology to assist students within the classroom setting, and for an accessibility, software package to use as part of the institute’s online learning platform to improve and enhance student access to online classes and notes.

Registrar and Vice-President for Academic Affairs David Denieffe welcomed the announcement.

“The provision of this funding is most welcome, for which I thank the Minister. Funding for initiatives such as accessibility software is crucial in helping to provide our students with a disability with a full range of supportive services that enables them to enjoy a fulfilling and positive learning experience during their time at IT Carlow. The funding will also assist our access office with its strategic development of disability services,” he said.

“We are looking forward to the provision of a sensory room on campus as a place to where our students with autism can retreat when things get overwhelming”, said Mr Denieffe.

The allocation to Institute of Technology Carlow is part of an overall €5.4million tranche of funding for 23 higher education institutions announced by Minister Harris aimed at improving access to higher education for people with a disability, improving college campuses and assisting staff with training and development.

Speaking today, Minister Harris said: “College can be an overwhelming experience but for people with disabilities, it can be extremely daunting. These projects will make a transformational difference to people’s lives. Education is for everyone and people with disabilities need to be supported by their third-level institutions”.