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Literacy Program

CNIB provides Ontario’s only literacy and basic skills program for Deafblind adults in Ontario.

Government of Canada logo, Employment Ontario logo and Government of Ontario logo

This Employment Ontario program is funded in part by the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario.

The program addresses a wide range of student goals, including:

  • Employment
  • Apprenticeship
  • Secondary school credit
  • Post-secondary education
  • Independence

How is it delivered?

  • One-on-one or small group instruction
  • Instruction in the preferred method of communication of the student
  • Year-round
  • Flexible class times

CNIB’s instructors follow the Ontario Adult Literacy Curriculum Framework, which is a competency-based framework that supports the development of adult learners and literacy programming.

What instruction is given?

  • Basic computer training
  • Numeracy
  • Measurement
  • Recognition and classification
  • Data management and probability
  • Filling out forms
  • Reading comprehension and writing skills
  • Job readiness
  • Managing schedules
  • Working with others
  • Budgeting
  • Problem solving
  • Resume writing
  • Community partner referrals and resources

Methods of communication:

  • Sign language
  • Fingerspelling
  • Two-hand manual alphabet
  • Voice over
  • Lip reading
  • Print-on-palm
  • Braille
  • Large-print notes

Assistive technologies available:

  • Screen-reading software (ie. JAWS – Job Access With Speech)
  • Screen magnification software (ZoomText)
  • Braillers – slate and stylus
  • Braille printers
  • Closed-circuit televisions
  • Specialized phones
  • Smartboard


  • Deafblind Ontario residents 19 years and older whose literacy skills are below Grade 12, and who are proficient enough to benefit fully from the language of instruction
  • Assessed with combined loss of hearing and vision

Where is it offered?

  • Classes are offered in Ottawa, Kingston, Toronto, Hamilton, Brantford and London
  • Instruction is available at various locations, including on-site classrooms, in the community or at the student’s home

How to apply:

Call or email to arrange an interview.

Contact CNIB’s Deafblind Literacy Program

Gwen Sheridan, Manager, Deafblind Community Services
Phone: 416-902-3776
Email: gwen.sheridan@deafblindservices.ca

Hours: Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.