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Croydon Sensory Support Service (CSSS)

This service is available for children and young people (CYP) with diagnosed hearing (HI) and/or visual impairment (VI), their families and settings, from 0 to 25 years.

The specialist teaching and support staff in the Service work in collaboration with health professionals, families and carers, setting staff and CYP.  The service is fully-funded for all maintained, academy and free schools in the borough as well as early years’ settings.

 The aim for all CYP with sensory impairment is to maximise:

  • educational progress and achievement.
  • enjoyable and successful participation in school and community life.
  • independence in the management of their disability.

The service is staffed by specialist teachers of the deaf and of the visually impaired, habilitation officers and specialist teaching assistants. All staff in the service have enhanced DBS clearance, and work within the child safeguarding procedures of the local authority and the settings in which they work. 

The service consists of

  • the peripatetic service (HI/VI)
  • the resourced provisions at Kingsley Primary Academy and Shirley High School (HI).

CSSS offers assessment and individualised educational intervention to support CYP with hearing and/or visual impairments.

Through the delivery of a combination of training, modelling, coaching and direct teaching support we aim to ensure that settings are able to meet the specific curriculum access and social and emotional needs of CYP with hearing and/or visual impairments and comply with duties under the Equality Act 2010.

The peripatetic team also supports pre-school children and their families from diagnosis. The service can visit families at home to:

  • offer impartial information and advice, answer questions and explain about hearing or visual impairment and its impact
  • provide information about early child development
  • work with the family and the child to model techniques to promote development e.g. communication or mobility skills
  • record progress with the family and identify next steps
  • provide advice and information about national and local support groups
  • help the family to manage prescribed aids e.g. hearing aids, glasses, low vision aids
  • support transition into nursery settings and Reception at primary school 


CYP can be referred by health, schools/settings, other professionals or families. Referrals must be with signed parental consent. A CSSS referral form should be completed, signed and accompanied by medical information confirming the diagnosis of hearing and/or visual impairment. Please see downloadable copy of the CSSS referral form on the right hand side of this page.

Hearing Impairment

CSSS will accept referrals for children with:

  • bilateral mild to profound sensori-neural or permanent conductive hearing loss  (BATOD criteria)
  • unilateral severe to profound  sensori-neural or permanent conductive hearing loss

CSSS will accept all referrals initially made via the Newborn Hearing Screening programme.

CSSS does not accept referrals for CYP with temporary conductive hearing impairment e.g. as a result of glue. In cases of glue ear where a child is aided temporarily, CSSS may be able to provide a one-off advisory visit to support the setting in managing the aids, subject to service capacity.

Visual Impairment

CSSS will accept referrals for CYP with:

  • a medically diagnosed visual impairment affecting both eyes which cannot be fully corrected with spectacles or contact lenses to within normal limits
  • a reduced visual acuity of 6/12 or less
  • a significant reduction in the child or student’s visual field

Settings are encouraged to contact the service prior to referral to discuss individual cases as appropriate. For referrals which lie outside these thresholds, the service may be able to offer signposting to useful resources or telephone advice.

Levels of intervention from the service are moderated with reference to the National Sensory Impairment Partnership (NatSIP) Eligibility Criteria.

Entry to the resourced provisions for hearing impairment is managed through the local authority  SEN service.


How to get in touch

You can contact CSSS in any of the following ways:

Phone: 0208 760 5780


Address: Croydon Sensory Support Service, 90 Central Parade, New Addington, CR0 0JB

Sensory Service

Lead for Visual Impairment: rowena.o' and

Acting Lead for Hearing Impairment:


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