State Mandated Screenings
The State of Texas requires several different screenings to be performed during the school year to ensure students are healthy and ready to learn. The required screenings include:
Vision and Hearing screenings for students in PK, K, 1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th grades
These screenings do not take the place of a thorough yearly eye exam, but are useful in identifying vision problems that can affect a student's ability to function in the classroom. Many hearing problems go undetected, so this screening can help parents know when further evaluation is indicated.
Acanthosis Nigricans screening for students in 1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th grades
This non-invasive screening helps identify students that are at risk for developing diabetes type 2. It is dark, rough skin around the neck which can be caused by high insulin levels. Parents are notified when this is noted and encouraged to have their child evaluated by a doctor.
Spinal Screening Policy Effective 2018-2019 School Year from the DSHS website:
- House Bill 1076, 85th Legislature, Regular Session, 2017, allows the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) to consider the most recent, nationally-accepted, peer-reviewed recommendations when considering appropriate age for conducting mandatory spinal screening.
- As of September 2, 2015, the Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) published a joint position statement paper with the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS), the Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America (POSNA), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and have the following recommendation: “AAOS, SRS, POSNA, and AAP believe that screening examinations for spine deformity should be part of the medical home preventative services visit for females at age 10 and 12 years, and males once at age 13 or 14 years.”
- In compliance with the Health and Safety Code, Chapter 37, all children shall undergo screening for abnormal spinal curvature in accordance with the following schedule:
- Girls will be screened two times, once at age 10 and again at age 12.
- Boys will be screened one time at age 13.
This non invasive screening helps identify spinal growth problems, such as scoliosis, by observing the student bending, from the side, and front facing. If any abnormality is seen, parents are notified so they can have their student evaluated by a doctor. It is important to identify spinal growth problems before students are finished growing to help correct the problem without surgery. Some spinal curvatures are severe enough that surgery is the only way to correct them. If you have questions or concerns, please contact your school nurse for more information. You may opt out of the school spinal screening by submitting:
- Documentation from a licensed professional that the individual is actively under medical care for one or more spinal problems [25 TAC §37.143(c)]; or
- A signed form from the parent, guardian, or managing conservator that screening for abnormal spinal curvature was, or will be, performed during a professional examination [25 TAC §37.144(d)]; or
- A signed form from the parent, legal guardian, or managing conservator in lieu of the screening record(s) stating the screening conflicts with the tenets and practices of a church or religious denomination of which the affiant is an adherent or member [25 TAC §37.144(e)].