For Teachers

Does a child in your classroom have:

  • Trouble reading the chalkboard?
  • Trouble completing schoolwork? 
  • Delayed progress or difficulties in school? 
  • Eye strain? 
  • Headaches? 
  • Short attention span? 
  • Avoidance of reading or close work? 
  • Frequent loss of place when reading? 
  • Poor handwriting? 
  • A child may or may not display symptoms of impaired vision.


All children can benefit from an eye examination

Vision First encourages comprehensive eye and vision examinations for all children first entering school and throughout the school-aged years.

The demands for reading and writing are occurring at an earlier age for children.  Parents and teachers are depending on the eye doctor’s eye examination to identify, treat, and prevent vision problems that could interfere with a child’s ability to succeed in school and in life.

  • A comprehensive eye and vision examination includes eye health, visual acuity, a refractive evaluation, and visual efficiency. 
  • Parents and teachers need to be aware of a child’s visual abilities and eye care needs in order to provide an excellent educational program.
  • The Vision First report forms are written for the parent and teacher and exceed state standards.
  • Remember, vision screening is not a substitute for an eye examination.


IFT initiates legislation

In 2005, the Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT) adopted the resolution Required Vision Examination Before Entering Kindergarten, also supported by Illinois PTA.

This resolution led the IFT to successfully pass legislation in 2007 requiring an eye exam by an eye doctor.  All children entering kindergarten will need an eye examination as a necessary prerequisite to academic learning.

The law became effective January 1, 2008.


Cheers to the IFT

“Vision First Foundation congratulates the Illinois Federation of Teachers under the leadership of Sharon Teefy, legislative director, Jane Russell, president of West Suburban Teachers Union Local 571, and chief sponsors Senator Deanna Demuzio and Representative Jil Tracy for initiating and ensuring the unanimous passage of Senate Bill 641.  In cooperation with the Illinois Optometric Association under the leadership of Michael Horstman, IOA executive director, this huge accomplishment will greatly benefit all children entering kindergarten in Illinois.  Your outstanding efforts in raising the standards of eye care for our children’s visual welfare are commended!”


Your teacher's union can do it, too

Work with your local teachers union to initiate the proposed resolution in your state: Importance of Comprehensive Eye and Vision Examinations.  Please contact Janet Hughes here...


Vision screening caused years of suffering

"My son had vision screenings since kindergarten during the 1980’s.  He passed each one but his teachers sensed something wasn’t right and suggested we visit the eye doctor.  I went to the free clinic in town where an eye doctor told me every time he had 20/20 vision.

When my son was in eighth grade, his scores on the state test showed this level: “eighth grade input, fifth grade output.”  Upon questioning his teacher about this unusual scoring, she recommended a vision specialist where he was diagnosed with convergence insufficiency.

Unfortunately his treatment came too late.  Vision screenings caused my son to “fall through the cracks.”  I can’t believe twenty-five years later the system hasn’t changed.  I applaud Vision First’s efforts to upgrade children’s eye care.”

                                               Dianne Bronzell, Parent from Illinois


"Act as if what you do makes a difference.  It does."
—William James


A completed Vision First report will assist a child's teacher in providing an excellent educational program for the child.

"For Illinois" versions here

If you live in Illinois, use the Vision First report forms and prewritten letters made for Illinois. These documents reference Illinois law. View "For Illinois" here...

For further information, please visit FAQ...

Questions? Comments? Need help?  Please contact us here...

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