• Health Screenings

    In this Chapter

    • Vision Screening
    • Hearing Screening
    • Scoliosis Screening
    • Growth and Development
    • Vision Screening Procedure/Checklist - Far Snellen Chart
    • Vision Screening Procedure/Checklist - Near Logarithmic
    • Vision Screening Documentation
    • Permission for Screening Letter- See Forms Section

    Screening Services 

    Screening for vision, hearing, scoliosis, height, and weight are mandated by Florida Administrative Code 64F-6.003 for specific groups of students according to grade level.  By electronically signing the Health Emergency Information Form parents/guardians give permission for these non-invasive screenings.  Any screening done outside of the standard screening schedule for specific grades must have a separate parental /guardian permission form. 

    See Screening Permission in the Forms Section.    

    Screenings do not diagnose but are designed to identify students who have results outside the normal limits.  Students that have results outside the normal limits are referred to be evaluated by a healthcare professional.  Early identification and treatment of physical problems are paramount to academic achievement.

    VISION SCREENING  

    Population:

    • Vision screening is mandated for students in grades K, 1, 3 and 6.  Also included are students entering Florida schools for the first time in grades K through 5.  Students in any grade may be referred for a vision screening by a teacher (parental permission is needed) or a parent if a problem is suspected (see Screening Permission in the Forms Section).
    • Vision screening includes far vision testing at all grade levels, color vision testing at grade K, and muscle balance (stereopsis) testing at grades K and 1.  Muscle balance testing is done to determine if the eyes are working together.  Failure of this muscle balance test puts the child at greater risk for loss of vision in one eye.  

    Process: 

    • Mass vision screening is conducted and recorded by trained members of the Florida Department of Health in Sarasota County School Health office.   
    • The School Health office sends an email  to each school administrator with a copy to the health room aide, school nurse or contact person containing pertinent information about the screening.
    • School staff prepare the screening schedule (three-day maximum).  The schedule must be able to accommodate all students within two or three days, depending on the size of the school population. 
    • The testing area must be quiet and fitted with a multi-service electric outlet, which will accommodate two or more vision machines.  A private place nearby for the scale/s and stadiometer/s for doing height and weight measurements will be required.
    • The testing area must have connectivity (wireless or plug in) for four computers to logon to SIS.
    • Teachers should be informed about the screenings well in advance; their cooperation is essential.  Students who wear glasses or contacts need to be reminded to wear them for the screening.  
    • Designated school staff, parent volunteer or a classroom aide will be needed to walk students to and from the screening area, line them up alphabetically, and maintain order.
    • The vision screening results are documented on the SIS Vision Group Health Screening panel.
    • Students who normally wear corrective lenses but do not have them with them, will be asked to bring them the next day.  However, if the corrective lenses are broken or lost, the screening will be done without them.
    • Vision screeners use the Snellen chart and/or Good Lite machine.
    • Students who cannot see the critical line for acuity are re-screened. 
    • The school nurse will send out a referral letter requesting an exam by an eye care specialist. (see RN SharePoint - Health Screening Documents - Vision).
    • Any family who cannot afford care shall be referred to the appropriate community agency for assistance.

    School health room aides, who have been trained by a nurse are responsible for screening students for ESE and parental requests (see “Vision -Far Vision Procedure and Checklist” in the Forms Section). 

    NOTE: For ESE referrals, please refer to Vision and Hearing Requirements for Intervention Assessment Services.  This document details when an earlier screening result is valid.  However, if a student displays any symptoms of visual disturbances as described in the above document, an additional screening should be done.  If the student requires screening for near vision, see "Vision - Near Vision Procedure and Checklist" in the Forms Section. The health room aide will notify the school nurse of students who fail the screening and the school nurse will re-screen these students. The health room aide will record the screening on the SIS Vision Screening Tab.  Vision screening completions are called into the School Health Office.   

    HEARING SCREENING

    Population:

    • Hearing screening is mandated for students in grades K, 1 & 6.  This includes students entering Florida schools for the first time in grades K through 5.  Students in any grade may be referred for a hearing screening by a teacher (parental permission is needed) or a parent if a problem is suspected (see Screening Permission form).

    Process:

    • Mass hearing screening is conducted and recorded by school staff that is designated by the School Principal.
    • All students who fail the initial screening are re-screened at a later date.
    • A summary of students who have been tested in the traditional public schools is given to the district’s audiology office.  An audiologist reviews the information and determines the disposition for each student. The parents of students who have been referred and require further medical or audiological evaluation are notified by mail.  Included with the notification is a form letter to be completed by the physician and returned to the school.  Comprehensive audiological evaluations are provided at no charge at the district’s facility or for a fee for students attending charter schools.
    • Mass hearing screening results are entered on the SIS Hearing Group Screening panel.
    • The referral to parents, the results of the medical examination and the physician’s recommendations for care will be documented on the SIS Hearing Screening Tab.
    • If parents have not completed medical or audiological follow-up after several notifications, the student may be referred to the school nurse for intervention.
    • Comprehensive hearing screening information is available in the current publication of the Countywide Hearing Screening Procedures Manual.

    Hearing screening completions are called into the School Health Office.

    NOTE: For ESE referrals, please refer to Vision and Hearing Requirements for Intervention Assessment Services.  This document details when an earlier screening result is valid.  However, if a student displays any symptoms of hearing loss as described in the above document, an additional screening should be done.    

    SCOLIOSIS SCREENING

    Population:

    • Scoliosis is a sideways (lateral) curving of the spine usually developing in preadolescence and adolescents during rapid growth spurts.
    • Scoliosis screening is mandated in Florida for students in grade six.
    • Students in any grade may be referred for scoliosis screening by a teacher or parent if a problem is suspected.  Parental permission is required (see Screening Permission Form).

    Process:

    • A school nurse conducts scoliosis screenings.
    • A screening tool, the scoliometer, may be used by the nurse to determine the degree of curvature in those students who are identified as having a deviation.
    • Mass scoliosis screening results are entered on the SIS Scoliosis Group Screening Panel.
    • A notification of scoliosis screening deviation will be sent to the parent. 
    • The school nurse conducts follow-up on referrals.

    GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT

    Population:

    • Growth and development screening (height and weight) is mandated for students in grades 1, 3 and 6, and highly recommended for students in grade 9.
    • Students in any grade may be referred for height and weight screening (with parental permission) if there is a concern (see Screening Permission Form).

    Process:

    • Height and weight measurements are normally conducted at the same time as the vision screening by the Florida Department of Health in Sarasota County staff.
    • Parents will be contacted by an individualized letter to those students whose height and weight results fall outside of health parameters.
    • The school nurse conducts follow-up as needed.

    PROCEDURES AND CHECKLISTS:

    The following Procedure and Checklists are found in the Forms Section:

    • Far Vision Screening Procedure and Checklist
    • Near Vision Logarithmic Screening Procedure and Checklist