High-tech vision screener is transforming lives at Southside ISD

Menchaca Early Childhood Center kindergarten student Lucas Fonseca, 6, shows off his new eye glasses.

Kristin Fonseca wondered why her six-year old son, Lucas, seemed frustrated and lacked concentration. She was amazed when Menchaca Early Childhood Center nurse Heather Siebert, R.N.,  learned in seconds that Lucas, a kindergarten student, could not see well and needed eye glasses. Lucas is no longer engaging in angry outbursts but instead is feeling far more confident. “Not only do I see an improvement in his work, his focus, attention, and a lack of fustration, but also in his behavior and responsibility,” said his mother, Kristin.

Last fall, Nurse Siebert was able to convince the District leadership about the benefits of investing in a vision spot screener. The $8000.00 high-tech optical scanner is easy to use and can detect vision problems in all students. No longer do students have to look at charts. The vision eye screener automatically and accurately detects optical issues in children and adults. “This allows us now to screen children without barriers. It doesn’t matter if they know their letters, speak the same language, or have special needs. We can screen them all,” said Nurse Siebert. All children from elementary to high school will be screened for vision issues.

Not only is this vision screener helping Southside ISD’s students see clearly, it’s also improving their academic performance.

Lucas’ teacher says she has seen big improvements in his test scores. A sign that clear vision has a direct correlation to good behavior and academic success.