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School failure linked to eye sight - study

Children are being set up to fail at school because they have undetected vision problems.

“Recent findings show 25% of children are at risk of failing at school because they can’t see clearly,” says NZ Association of Optometrists president Andrew Sangster. “Children deserve better.”

In recent research in America, 25% of children between ages 5 - 12 that were tested had poor vision from a sample of 1365 students.

“Eighty percent of all information processed by the brain is collected by the eyes, so improved vision has a large impact on learning difficulties,” says Sangster. “If you can’t see clearly you won’t learn in a classroom.”

An eye examination is one of the most important exams a kid can pass.

Evan Brown, who helped develop guidelines for examining children with the Association of Optometrists, agrees. “In researching the guidelines, the literature continues to show the role that vision plays for many children struggling with learning. Optometrists do not treat children with learning difficulties directly, they treat the visual and perceptual problems that impair a child’s ability to be receptive to education. Complete, thorough visual examination of not only the eyesight but all visual skills is extremely important for children who fall behind at school.”


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