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New Braunfels Area Lions Club members are providing vision and hearing screeningS for pre-Kinder to 7th grade students this fall. Last year, the Lions tested 7000 students in the New Braunfels and Comal ISDs, as well as at local private schools.
This year they expect to screen an even greater number. The Department of State Health Services requires vision and hearing screenings of all students in pre-K, kindergarten, 1st, 3rd, 5th and 7th grade as well as all new students.
“If the nurse was responsible for screening the students by herself, it would take until December,” said Karen Schwind, NBISD health services coordinator. “As a result of the assistance by the Lions Clubs, referrals can be completed early in the school year and any issues can be corrected.”
Poor eyesight affects learning, and once detected and corrected, the pathway to student success is much clearer. "We get feedback from people who were screened when they were children and they found out that they needed glasses," said Lion Ramiro Martinez. "If it hadn't been for the Lions, this would not have been brought out, and they achieved higher levels of education because their eyesight was corrected."
Testing is just the first step in better vision for students. "When a child is referred to the school nurse, and the child's parents cannot afford glasses, they can refer that child to one of the Lions Clubs in town," explained Lion Robert Allen Miller, "and we'll pay for the eye examination and glasses for the child."
Lion David Schreier noted that the Lions Club purchase of a Spot Scope Screener allows for testing of pre-Kinder students. "They just look into it. They don't have to read any letters. It shoots light into the eyes and measures it, and it can tell you if there's a defect in the eye that needs further examination."
“We as nurses are so appreciative of the Lions Club members that volunteer their time with the screenings,” said Kelsey Boyd, the nurse at Lone Star Early Childhood Center in NBISD. “Most of the time, it is our students’ first experience with a screening and the volunteers make them feel comfortable every step of the way. When I see students who were referred to an eye doctor come back with glasses it is a great feeling knowing their ability to learn has improved. That happens with the help of the Lions Club!”
LINK TO PHOTO GALLERY: https://nbisdphotos.smugmug.com/CampusPhotos/Seele-Elementary/2019-2020-School-Year/Lions-Club-Vision-Hearing-Testing-09-24-19/
CAPTION: New Braunfels Noon Lions Club member Jim Pope assists student with eyesight test
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