Amanda Roberts, Former Pupil

Amanda writes stories, creates vivid paintings and produces the most expressive sculptures. She’s never happier than when composing at the piano, and can read a 24-point font but doesn’t read music. 

The former Royal Blind School student, aged 18, learns tunes by listening. She can hear a piece of music and play it straight away. She has enough sight to get by with so she is not a Braille student but she has good computer skills and loves JAWS software.

When she was just five weeks old, Amanda suffered heart failure. She was then diagnosed with a unique eye condition which required her to have a corneal transfer on both of her eyes. 

Her parents, William and Clare, secured a place for Amanda in the Royal Blind School nursery when she was just three. Now, 15 years later, after graduating there’s a lot she misses about the school. It has been her whole life and helped her flourish in expressive ways, enriching her life immensely. 

Amanda’s mum Clare said: “We heard about the school through word of mouth. 

“It’s been a happy place. It’s been all about what you can do rather than what you can’t do. She wouldn’t have been able to do what she has done anywhere else.” 

Now that school is over, Amanda’s diary remains jam-packed with the activities she loves. She has joined Teen Plus, a transitional education project which builds on the educations, skills and interests she developed at school. She is still involved in drama and attends Dance Base where she does hip-hop every week. 

Amanda’s musical talent is progressing with regular piano lessons and, happily, her connection with Royal Blind continues. She sleeps over once a week at Forward Vision and volunteers at Kidscene, reading to the younger children.

A recent performance at Dunfermline’s Carnegie Hall highlights Amanda’s continuing achievements, and love of drama, thanks to the experience she gained at the Royal Blind School.