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About Us

Our Mission
The mission of the Kentucky School for the Blind is to provide comprehensive educational services to all Kentucky students who are blind and visually impaired.

Signage in front entrance of KSB; Costigan Cupola is in the background.

Our Vision
Empowering Students who are Blind and Visually Impaired to Command their Future

Our Beliefs
We believe students who are blind and visually impaired  …

  • can become college and career ready through world class instruction and services
  • have unique needs that must be met
  • have a right to knowledge, tools and relationships necessary to build successful lives
  • deserve to be taught in a safe and caring environment by competent professionals
  • are meaningful contributors to society


Student works on Art Project


Our History

KSB was the third state-supported school for the blind established in the United States. The school’s founder was Bryce McLellan Patten who began teaching a class of six blind students in the summer of 1839.

Bryce Patten invited his brother Otis to teach at the institute in Louisville. In early 1841, in an effort to attain funding for a school for the blind, Otis Patten presented an exhibition of his blind students’ skills before the Kentucky General Assembly. Unfortunately, funding was not granted. Dr. Samuel Gridley Howe of the Massachusetts Institute for the Blind often traveled with his students to promote the education of blind children.

The Patten brothers invited Dr. Howe and his students to Kentucky to make a presentation to the Kentucky Legislature. On February 5, 1842, the Kentucky Institution for the Blind was chartered with an appropriation of $10,000. The school opened in May, 1842, on Sixth Street in downtown Louisville.

In less than a year, the school outgrew its building. After outgrowing several buildings in the area, a permanent school home was built on Broadway Avenue in 1845. This building burned in 1851 and the decision was made to move the school out of the city. A tract of land known as the Frankfort Turnpike Road (now Frankfort Avenue) was purchased and a new school was built on it in 1855. In 1967, that building was razed to make way for a modern facility that would better serve students with visual impairments.

Today, KSB continues to help all Kentucky students who are blind and visually impaired to develop their talents, their skills and attitudes to become confident, competent, and independent adults.  


Student reads enlarged print

Educational Services for Students

As the Statewide Educational Resource on Blindness, KSB offers a vast menu of services to meet the needs of all Kentucky students with visual impairments.  These include:

Student uses an abacus

Enrichment Opportunities for Students

KSB offers students an array of extracurricular activities such as:

  • Music ~ Choir, Band, Percussion Ensemble and Keyboarding
  • Athletics ~ Wrestling, Goalball, Cheerleading, Track /Field and Swimming
  • Bill Roby Track and Field Games
  • Braille Readers are Leaders
  • Braille Challenge Competition
  • Braille and Low Vision Carnival
  • Short Course Weekend Retreat
  • Forensics
  • Art
  • Boy Scouts


Support to Parents and Families    

Family Support Services  promote and engage parents, caregivers and other family members as full partners in the education process. Outreach staff takes an active role in collaboration with other agencies in planning and hosting regional and/or statewide activities that promote family awareness and involvement in their child's education.


Students and families participate in Envisioning the future in KEDC


Support to School Districts  

KSB Outreach supports proficient student performance by assisting local school districts in reducing barriers to learning associated with a vision loss and by providing students access to the general curriculum, the Program of Studies, Core Content, and Expanded Core Curriculum for Students with Visual Impairments including:

  • Gateways to Independence Professional Development for Statewide Teachers and Service Providers
  • Specialized Trainings
  • Consultative Services
  • Low Vision Clinic
  • Technical Assistance
Outreach consultants speak to college bound students


Campus Life 

KSB provides a homelike environment in a dormitory setting that encourages students to attain proficiency and independence in daily living. While residing on campus, students have access to a wide range of extracurricular and recreational activities.

Dorm Students stand at the top of a hay bale mountain







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Kentucky School for the Blind
1867 Frankfort Avenue
Louisville, KY 40206



KSB is a branch of the Division of Learning Service in the Office of Next Generation Learner within the Kentucky Department of Education (KDE).   

Robin Fields Kinney 
Interim KDE Commissioner of Education and KSB Superintendent

Gretta Hylton
KDE Associate Commissioner, Office of Special Education and Learning Services

Shannon Sparkman
KDE Director of State Schools

Peggy Sinclair-Morris 

Michael Coffey
Assistant Principal

Shelley Badgett
Director of Special Education


502-897-1583, 0203


KSB Advisory Board 

Appointed by the Kentucky Board of Education, this board serves in an advisory capacity and may offer recommendations to KSB ad­ministrators on the general objectives regarding the education of  students who are blind or visually impaired, student services and school/community relations. 

Janell Turner, Trisha Brogner, Virren Molhatrra, Melanie Peskoe, Nicole Gaines


KSB is located on 15 acres in the beautiful historic Clifton neighborhood in Louisville. If you visit the campus, parking is available on Frankfort Avenue, Haldeman Avenue or on the KSB side of Will Evans Way (in between KSB and APH). Directions to KSB