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Association News
29 April 2016
Issue 181
Children with autism most likely to miss out on eye care
National sight loss and disability charity SeeAbility has found that three quarters (75 per cent) of children with no history of eye care tested as part of their Children in Focus Campaign were noted to have Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

SeeAbility are estimating over 33,000 children with ASD in England’s special schools could be missing out on routine eye care. The alarming statistics come as MPs debated a motion on Thursday 28 April during World Autism Awareness Week, following a bid from Cheryl GIllan MP, Conservative MP for Chesham and Amersham.

The charity has been sight testing children in a number of special schools since 2013 and its second annual report titled ‘28 times more likely’, named because children with learning disabilities are 28 times more likely to have a serious sight problem. The report also exposes:

  • Over half of children tested had a vision problem
  • 43 per cent of pupils seen for the first time had no history of eye care
  • 85 per cent of those discharged from hospital eye clinics had no follow up community eye care
  • 36 per cent of children seen needed glasses
Click here to read more
Health Committee urged to carry out further inquiry into primary care Read More
Wallace and Gromit animators create new character to fight blindness Read More
Millions of motorists risk driving with bad eyesight Read More
Courses Co-ordinator, Optical Support Programmes

ABDO College is offering a fantastic opportunity for a highly motivated and enthusiastic individual to join our team of dedicated teaching and administrative staff at Godmersham, Kent.

ABDO College offer a range of courses through Access, Diploma, Degree, Advanced and Honours, providing quality programmes leading to ABDO examinations and now also offers training courses leading to Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers (WCSM) qualifications.

ABDO College specialises in the provision of blended and distance learning education for the optical profession. Devotion and care are coupled with extensive professional knowledge to equip students with the understanding and skills for their chosen progression. ABDO College has an impressive reputation for high standards and exemplary pass rates.

The available post is a 0.50FTE (2.5 days per week) and the role will include the preparation of all course materials required for optical assistants and optical technicians courses, supporting the provision of these materials through Moodle, delivery of  workshops, sourcing and organising staff and venues to support the latter, co-ordinating tutors and undertaking tutor evaluation.

The person we are looking for will:

  • Be a qualified and registered dispensing optician, ideally with an optical technician background
  • Have excellent IT skills
  • Have the ability to teach a wide range of theory and practical subjects at the appropriate level for optical technicians and optical assistants
  • Have excellent interpersonal skills
  • Have the ability to work within a team and be self-motivated
  • Be required to attend the College on a regular basis

Applicants should send a CV and covering letter detailing their suitability for the role, with details of two referees to:
Jo Underwood, College Principal, ABDO College, Godmersham Park, Godmersham, Canterbury, Kent CT4 7DT

For additional information or to discuss the post, telephone Jo Underwood on 01227 733 906 or email

Closing date: 31st May 2016
10% saving on National Trust gift cards

Treat your loved ones to days out, country cottage breaks, a spot of lunch, cream teas, shopping trips, and entry to special places with a National Trust gift card.

*Terms and conditions apply. See website for details. Offers subject to change without notice. This ABDO membership benefit is managed on behalf of ABDO by Parliament Hill Ltd.

View more information
ABDO board – Election of directors 2016

A reminder that nominations should be submitted no later than 10am on Thursday 9 June 2016.

Click here to find out more and to download the election notice and nomination form

ABDO on Linked In

The Association of British Dispensing Opticians is now active on Linked In. Search for Association of British Dispensing Opticians or follow the link,, for news every week about what’s going on in the professional world of optics.


ABDO and ITN Productions have launched a news and current affairs-style programme for the third consecutive year. 'ABDO Insight 2016’ explores the latest innovations and the changing role of dispensing opticians.

Click here to read more and to view the programme
Consultation Day with the Areas

The next Consultation Day with the ABDO Areas will be held on Tuesday 10 May 2016 at The Medical Society of London, Lettsom House, 11 Chandos Street, London W1G 9EB. All ABDO members are invited and welcome to attend.

Registration and coffee will be from 10.00am – 10.30am and the Consultation Day will finish at 3.30pm.

To confirm your attendance email Jane Burnand at

ABDO CET - change of email address

Please note the ABDO CET office has changed its email address from and to with immediate effect.

Please use
ABDO CET in Jersey

Friday 29 July 2016
Somerville Hotel, Mont Du Boulevard, St Aubin, Jersey JE3 8AD

  • A day of CET
  • Up to 14 interactive CET points available
  • 10.00am registration / 5.00pm close
  • Lunch and refreshments provided
  • This ABDO CET event is provided free of charge for ABDO members only
  • Thank you to our sponsors, ClearLab, Hoya and William Morris, for helping to provide this event free of charge for ABDO members
Click here to register online
Foundation Degree /BSc (Hons) in Ophthalmic Dispensing and Fellowship Dispensing Diploma

ABDO College offers a choice of two distance learning courses on the route to becoming a qualified dispensing optician:

Option 1
A two-year Foundation Degree course followed by a third year BSc Degree course in Ophthalmic Dispensing – leading to BSc (Hons) and the ABDO Level 6 FBDO qualifications.

Option 2
A three-year diploma course in Ophthalmic Dispensing – leading to the ABDO Level 6 FBDO qualification.

Course features

  • Combines academic and work-based learning
  • 32 weekly distance learning units in each academic year
  • Four weeks block release at Godmersham in each academic year
  • Block release accommodation can be provided
  • Year 1 courses will commence in September 2016

Entry requirements

  • Grade C or above GCSE in English, mathematics, science and two other subjects, including evidence of recent learning
  • Applicants must be working in practice as a trainee dispensing optician for a minimum of 30 hours per week and havethe support of their employer

For further information and application forms please contact the ABDO College Courses Team on 01227 738 829 (Option 1) or email

Click here to email ABDO College
WCSM Courses - available through ABDO College

A comprehensive education programme focused on driving up skill levels among the non-regulated workforce within the optical sector

WCSM courses range from Level 2 Optical Support to Level 4 Optical Technicians (and soon to be available a Level 4 Diploma for Optical Assistants). The programme also includes Fast Track Technician Training for FBDOs.

WCSM courses now available from ABDO College:

  • Level 2 & Level 3 Optical Support
  • Level 2 & Level 3 Diploma in Optical Retail Skills
  • Level 2 & Level 3 Diploma in Manufacturing Spectacles
  • Level 4 Diploma for Optical Assistants*
  • Level 4 Diploma for Optical Technicians
  • Fast Track Technician Training for FBDOs

Qualifications Accredited in Scotland

  • Level 5 & Level 7 Certificate in Optical Care

For further information and application forms, or to request a copy of the WCSM Courses Prospectus, please call the courses team at ABDO College 01227 738 829 (Option 1) or email

*New course soon to be available

Click here to email ABDO College
The Principles of Ophthalmic Lenses (5th Edition)

The new 5th edition of The Principles of Ophthalmic Lenses, by Professor Mo Jalie, is now available from the ABDO College Bookshop.

The new 5th edition includes four new chapters, plus five appendices and all other chapters have been updated and modernised with the latest technology being described in detail.

Click here to read more and to order online
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