The Cheshire Lions, from Oct. 17 through Nov. 2, performed eye screenings in all Cheshire Public Schools. Connecticut law requires that school districts conduct vision screenings for students in kindergarten, and first, third, fourth, and fifth grades.
Traditionally students have been screened using a Snellen chart and the screening is done by the school nurse in each building. The Snellen chart only screens for difficulty with nearsightedness (myopia) and the child must be verbal and able to follow directions to complete the screening.
The Lions Club is able to offer screening using a Spot Screener camera that screens not only for myopia but also for amblyopia (lazy eye), strabismus (eye misalignment), hyperopia (farsightedness), astigmatism (blurred vision) and anisometropia (unequal refractive power). The screening is done with a camera held a few feet from the student's eyes and takes seconds to complete for each child. The child does not need to be verbal or actively participate other than looking at the camera.
The Lions Club had met with Superintendent Dr. Jeff Solan and Head Nurse Nancy Stanton to discuss this improved screening in September. Recent changes in the State Education regulations allowed for this. They agreed to proceed with improved the eye screening.
The screenings resulted in 9.4% of the children being referred to getting a full eye examination from an eye doctor versus what was 1.5% under the old Snellen chart in the past.
School nurses are mailing the reports to parents for all children needing eye exams.
If you receive a report for your child, bring the report to your eye doctor. This follow-up exam is extremely important.
Superintendent of Schools Dr. Jeff Solan said, “We value our relationship with the Lions Club and are incredibly grateful that they were able to provide this enhanced screening for our children. We look forward to continuing this partnership for years to come.”