The Cooper Institute

Founded in 1970 by the "Father of Aerobics"
Kenneth H. Cooper MD, MPH


Vision Screenings Are Key to Academic and Athletic Success in Students

Written by
Amber Freeland
Posted in

Friday, Sep 07, 2018

The new school year is in full swing as students everywhere are reading, writing and playing sports. We know that physical fitness is important to student achievement. Studies using FitnessGram data have shown that students who are fit miss fewer days of school and have academic success. But, youth fitness isn’t the only thing affecting academic achievement.

Poor vision puts students at a disadvantage in the classroom. That’s why The Cooper Institute, thanks to a generous grant from The Rosewood Foundation, has collaborated with Essilor Vision Foundation and the Vision Impact Institute in an effort to support the whole child. Our goal is to raise awareness about the importance of vision screening in schools to support student success both in the classroom and on the field.  

Imagine trying to learn or play sports with blurry vision. Would you know the difference between a circle and a square if you could not see a square's sharp corners? What about the difference between the letters 'e' and 'o' if you couldn't make out the small line and space in the 'e'. Could you accurately throw or hit a ball if you couldn’t see it or see the target? Poor vision can have a detrimental effect on a child’s success in all areas.

Children with poor vision are at a major disadvantage in the classroom because 80% of all learning occurs visually. Poor vision often goes undetected in children, yet it can result in a lifetime of hardship. If left uncorrected, children can encounter difficulties learning in the classroom and socializing on the playground. Additionally, poor vision can also lead to poor fitness levels that carry on well into adulthood and lead to a host of other health-related problems. With a simple eye exam, vision problems can be detected. Unlike many other childhood conditions, poor vision is highly treatable if detected early on.

As schools gear up for the FitnessGram assessment, ask if they are also providing vision screenings. Annual physical exams for school sports can also serve as a reminder to schedule your child for a comprehensive eye exam. Correcting the eyesight of children is a "high impact investment" that can lead to greater academic success, athletic performance, and improved overall health so they can live and see #WELLintothefuture.