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Accessibility Policy

Lakeview Montessori School is committed to ensuring equal access and participation for staff, students, and visitors with disabilities. We are committed to treating all people in a way that allows them to maintain their dignity and independence. We believe in integration, and we are committed to increasing accessibility for persons with disabilities in the areas of information, communications, and employment to the best of our abilities. We will do so by preventing  and removing barriers to accessibility and meeting the accessibility requirements under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) and Ontario's accessibility laws.

Our Commitment
Lakeview Montessori School is committed to meeting its current and ongoing obligations under the Ontario Human Rights Code respecting non-discrimination and is committed to excellence in serving and providing goods, services or facilities to all customers including persons with disabilities. This Accessibility Plan will be reviewed and updated every five years alongside the Strategic Plan.

Click here to view the Multi-Year Plan. 

Lakeview Montessori School welcomes feedback on how we provide accessible customer service. Customer feedback will help us identify barriers and respond to concerns.
Feedback may be provided in the following ways:
  • Email
  • Phone
  • Letter
  • Voice Mail/Memo
Lakeview Montessori School will communicate with persons with disabilities in ways that consider their disability. We will ensure that its process for receiving and responding to feedback is accessible to persons with disabilities by providing, or arranging for the provision of, accessible formats and communications supports, upon request as soon as possible.

List of 14 items.

  • Accessible Formats and Communication Supports for Employees

    Upon the request of an employee with a disability, Lakeview Montessori School will consult with the employee to provide, or arrange for the provision of, accessible formats and communication supports for information that is needed to perform his/her job, and information that is generally available to other employees.

    Assistive devices enable customers to do everyday tasks such as moving around, communicating reading or lifting by reducing or eliminating barriers. These can include such devices as wheelchairs, listening devices, portable oxygen tanks, laptops with screen reading software and communication programs, canes or smartphones.
    When working with assistive devices it is important to:
    - Never refuse to work with a device
    - Provide appropriate amount of space
    - Do not block, knock or bump into the device
    - Do not stare at or gawk at the device
    – Never move/touch device without asking for permission
    - Offer assistance if the customer is having trouble working their device
  • Communication Supports

    Lakeview Montessori School will work with the person with disabilities to determine what method of communication works best with them for both the Accessibility Policy and Multi-Year Plan. We will ensure all staff are trained and informed of any changes or updates that need to take place in their communication within the first month of this change or annually whichever comes first. Communication formats include word, voice over/closed caption and html.
  • Customer Service Tips

    Deaf / Oral Deaf / Deafened / Hard of Hearing:
    People who experience hearing loss may be deaf, oral deaf, deafened, or hard of hearing. People experiencing hearing loss may use assistive devices, like hearing aids, special telephones, sign language interpreters, various amplifiers or a pen and paper.
    Customer Service Tips:
    • Attract the individual’s attention before speaking. For example, try a gentle touch on the shoulder or wave of your hand.
    • Don’t shout or snap your fingers.
    • Make sure you are in a well-lit area where your individual can see your face.
    • If the person uses a hearing aid, reduce background noise or move him or her to a quieter area.
    Deaf blind
    A person who is deaf blind cannot see or hear to some degree. Many people who are deaf blind will be accompanied by a professional who helps with communicating. Interveners are trained in special sign language that involves touching the hands of the client in a two-hand, manual alphabet or finger spelling.
    Customer Service Tips:
    • An individual who is deaf blind is likely to explain to you how to communicate with them or give you an assistance card or a note explaining how to communicate with them.
    • Speak directly to the individual, not to the intervener and identify yourself to the intervener when you approach your individual who is deaf blind.

    Intellectual/ Developmental Disabilities
    Developmental or intellectual disabilities can mildly or profoundly limit a person’s ability to learn, communicate, do every day physical activities and live independently. You may not be able to know that someone has this disability unless you are told, or you notice the way the person acts, asks questions or uses his or her body language. However, they may understand you more than you realize. An example of a developmental disability would be Down Syndrome.
    Customer Service Tips:
    • Don’t assume what a person can or cannot do.
    • Make sure the individual understands what you’ve said. You can be direct and ask: “Do you understand this?”
    • Provide one piece of information at a time. Use plain language. You can break down the information into simpler concepts, without exaggerating speech or gestures or being patronizing. You may want to ask if the information needs to be repeated.
    Learning Disabilities
    Learning disabilities refers to a variety of disorders that affect how a person takes in and retains information. People with learning disabilities just learn differently. Learning disabilities affect people from all backgrounds and are not caused by culture, language or a lack of motivation. Learning disabilities are specific impairments that can result in problems with reading and language-based learning (dyslexia), problems with mathematics (dyscalculia), or problems with writing and fine motor skills (dysgraphia). This disability may become apparent in your customer service interaction when the person has difficulty reading material or taking in and processing the information you are providing.
    Customer Service Tips:
    • Take some time — people with some learning disabilities may take a little longer to process, understand and respond.
    • Provide information in a way that works for the individual. For example, keep a pen and paper handy. That way, you can explain, and then review and repeat the information using your notes. If you’re discussing confidential information, consider giving the notes to the individual or offering to destroy them.
    • Be prepared to explain any materials you provide for your customers.
    Mental Health Disabilities
    The important thing to remember is to focus on completing the transaction in a calm, patient way and meeting the individual’s needs. Mental health issues can affect a person’s ability to think clearly, concentrate or remember. Mental health disability is a broad classification for many disorders that can range in severity. Customers may experience anxiety due to phobias or panic disorder. Hallucinations, mood swings, and a deep lack of motivation may be signs of a mental health disability. A person may have a clinical depression or bipolar disorder. The major barrier for people with mental health disabilities is the stigma associated with it and the lack of understanding.
    Customer Service Tips:
    • Be confident and reassuring. As with all customers, listen carefully and focus on meeting the individual’s needs.
    • If the person appears to be in a crisis, ask them to tell you the best way to help.
    • If a customer appears to show signs of a mental health disability, it may be helpful to keep in mind that the customer’s reactions are not connected to you personally, as a service provider. The customer may simply be showing symptoms of mental illness.
    Physical or Disabilities Affecting Mobility
    The common image of someone with a physical disability who uses a wheelchair is a stereotype. For example, physical disabilities can result from arthritis, heart or lung conditions or amputations.
    Customer Service Tips:
    • People with physical disabilities often have their own ways of doing things, so it’s a good idea to ask before you help.
    • Respect your individual’s personal space. Don’t lean over them or on an assistive device.
    • Don’t move items or equipment, such as canes or walkers, out of the individual’s reach.
    • If you have permission to move a person in a wheelchair remember to make sure your customer is ready to be moved and that you describe what you are going to do beforehand. Don’t leave the individual in an awkward, dangerous or undignified position such as facing a wall or in the path of opening doors.
    • In some situations, inform your customer of the accessible features in the immediate environment (automatic doors, accessible washrooms, elevators, ramps, etc.).

    Speech or Language Impairments
    Some individuals may have problems communicating because of their disability. Cerebral palsy, stuttering, hearing loss or other conditions may make it difficult for the person to pronounce words or may cause slurring or stuttering. A person with this type of disability may use a communication board or other assistive devices.
    Customer Service Tips:
    • Don’t assume that just because a person has this disability they also have another.
    • Give your customer whatever time they need to get their point across. If appropriate, offer to move to a more comfortable location.
    • Ask questions that can be answered “yes” or “no,” if possible.
    • Don’t interrupt or finish your customer’s sentences. Give them time to finish.
    Customers with Vision Loss
    There are different types of vision disabilities that can reduce a person’s ability to see clearly. Some people may experience reduced side vision or, a lack of central vision meaning they cannot see straight ahead but very few people are completely blind. Depending on the severity of the vision loss, you may not be able to identify a person with limited vision. Some may require the assistance of a service animal or use a white cane, but others may not show any signs of their limitations.
    Vision loss can restrict someone’s ability to read signs, locate landmarks, or see hazards. Some customers may use a guide dog or white cane; others may not. Some customers simply need to view written materials—like documents, receipts, menus, brochures, instructions or labels—in brail or in large print, or with the help of a magnifier.
    Customer Service Tips:
    • Don't assume the individual can't see you.
    • Identify yourself when you approach your customer and speak directly to him or her.
    • Offer your elbow to guide the person. If they accept, walk slowly, but wait for permission before doing so.
    • Identify landmarks or other details to orient your customer to the environment around them.
    • If you’re giving directions or providing any information, be precise and descriptive. For example, if you’re approaching a door or an obstacle, say so.
    • Don't leave your customer in the middle of a room. Guide them to a chair or a comfortable location.

  • Documented Individual Accommodation Plans

    Lakeview Montessori School will have a written process for the development of documented individual accommodation plans for employees with disabilities. These plans will be kept in the locked cabinet personnel file or in child’s OSR.

    If requested, information regarding accessible formats and communications supports provided will also be included in individual accommodation plans.

    In addition, the plans will include customized workplace emergency response information (where required) and will identify any other accommodation that is to be provided.
  • Emergency Response Information

    Where needed, we will also provide customized emergency information to help an employee with a disability during an emergency. With the employee's consent, we will provide workplace emergency information to a designated person who is providing assistance to that employee during an emergency.

    We will provide the information within the first month after we become aware of the need for accommodation due to the employee's disability.

    We will review the individualized workplace emergency response information:
    • when the employee moves to a different location in the organization;
    • when the employee's overall accommodations needs or plans are reviewed; and
    • when the employer reviews its general emergency response policies. 
    We have a written process to develop individual accommodation plans for employees.

  • Informing Employees of Supports

    Lakeview Montessori School will continue to inform its employees of its policies (and any updates to those policies) used to support employees with disabilities, including policies on the provision of job accommodations that consider an employee’s accessibility needs due to disability. This information will be provided to new employees within the first month after commencing employment.
  • Notice of Temporary Disruption

    In the event of a planned or unexpected disruption to services or facilities for persons with disabilities, Lakeview Montessori School will notify persons promptly. This will be clearly noticed and will include information about the reason for the disruption, its anticipated length of time, and a description of alternative options, if available.
    The notice will be made publicly available in one or more of the following ways:
    • Email
    • Phone
    • Website
    • Social Media
  • Notice to Successful Applicants

    We will consult with employees when arranging for the provision of suitable accommodation in a manner that considers the accessibility needs due to disability. We will consult with the person making the request in determining the suitability of an accessible format or communication supports specifically for:
    • information that is needed to perform the employee's job; and
    • information that is generally available to employees in the workplace
  • Performance Management

    Lakeview Montessori School will consider the accessibility needs of employees with disabilities, as well as individual accommodation plans, when conducting performance management, providing career development and advancement to employees.
  • Recruitment, Assessment or Selection Process

    We notify employees, job applicants and the public that accommodations can be made during recruitment and hiring. We notify job applicants when they are individually selected to participate in an assessment or selection process that accommodations are available upon request. We consult with the applicants and provide or arrange for suitable accommodation.
    We notify successful applicants of policies for accommodating employees with disabilities when making offers of employment.
    We notify staff that supports are available for those with disabilities within the first month after they begin their employment. We provide updated information to employees whenever there is a change to existing policies on the provision of job accommodation that take into account an employee's accessibility needs due to a disability.
  • Return to Work

    Lakeview Montessori School maintains the right to ask for a documented return to work process for its employees who have been absent from work due to a disability and who require disability-related accommodations in order to return to work from their physician.

    This return to work process will not replace or override any other return to work process created by or under any other statute (ie, the Workplace Safety Insurance Act, 1997).
    The employee has the most knowledge about their own needs and what accommodations will best meet those needs. At other times, Lakeview Montessori School may ask the worker whether accommodation would help them perform job tasks. After the employee and Lakeview Montessori School have talked about the need for accommodation, together, they shall plan accommodations based on the discussion. If the employee’s current position does not meet their needs for accommodation, Lakeview Montessori School will offer a position that is more suitable. For example, if a worker could no longer lift heavy objects but that worker’s job rarely involved lifting, the worker could continue the job and sometimes use the accommodation of a cart for lifting boxes.
  • Service Animals

    We welcome people with disabilities and their service animals. Service animals are allowed on the parts of our premises that are open to the public and third parties. When we cannot easily identify that an animal is a service animal, our staff may ask documentation (template, letter or form) from a regulated health professional that confirms the person needs the service animal for reasons relating to their disability.
    A service animal can be easily identified through visual indicators, such as when it wears a harness or a vest, or when it helps the person perform certain tasks.
    A regulated health professional is defined as a member of one of the following colleges:
      • College of Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists of Ontario
      • College of Chiropractors of Ontario
      • College of Nurses of Ontario
      • College of Occupational Therapists of Ontario
      • College of Optometrists of Ontario
      • College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario
      • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
      • College of Psychologists of Ontario
      • College of Registered Psychotherapists and Registered Mental Health Therapists of Ontario
  • Support Person

    A person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person will be allowed to have that person accompany them on our premises. If they are working in, volunteering at and around children in LAKEVIEW’s care, we will follow volunteer and employee policies of requesting a Vulnerable Sector Check following the requirements of the Ministry of Education and CCEYA.
    In certain cases, this organization might require a person with a disability to be accompanied by a support person for the health or safety reasons of:
      • the person with a disability
      • others on the premises
    Before making a decision, this organization name will:
      • consult with the person with a disability to understand their needs
      • consider health or safety reasons based on available evidence
      • determine if there is no other reasonable way to protect the health or safety of the person or others on the premises
  • Training Employees and Volunteers

    Lakeview Montessori School will be training to staff and volunteers on the requirements of the accessibility standards referred to in the Regulation and will continue to provide training on the Human Rights Code as it pertains to persons with disabilities.
    In addition, we will train:
    1. All persons who participate in developing the organization’s policies; and
    2. All other persons who provide goods, services, or facilities on behalf of the organization.
    The training will be appropriate to the duties of the employees, volunteers, and other persons.

    We shall train every employee after being hired and participating in the onboarding/orientation process within the first month. Current employees will be trained when changes are made to the accessibility policy based on need and annually. We will maintain records of the training provided.
    Training of our employees and volunteers on accessibility relates to their specific roles.
    Training includes:
      • Purpose of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 and the requirements of the Customer Service Standards
      • Our policies related to the Customer Service Standards
      • How to interact and communicate with people with various types of disabilities
      • How to interact with people with disabilities who use an assistive device or require the assistance of a service animal or a support person
    We train every person during the onboarding/orientation process within the first month after being hired and provide training in respect of any changes to the policies.