It’s the time of year parents are encouraged to get their kids’ eyes checked, and students on Wednesday were taking eye exams at the statehouse. Amy O’Brien’s assistant Director of “Prevent Blindness Iowa,” and says an undetected vision problem can lead to learning disabilities.She says kids can’t learn if they can’t see the blackboard, and she says 80 percent of what they learn in early years is from what they see. She explains many kids don’t tell anyone they have trouble seeing because they assume things look fuzzy to everyone. Parents should get ’em checked before school and yearly after that. O’Brien says vision problems can also affect athletic ability, and self-esteem. There’s even a startling link to misbehavior. She says 74-percent of juvenile delinquents have failed a vision exam.O’Brien says if it’s a problem to pay for an eye exam, the school nurses in many districts can give one for free, and many local Boys and Girls Clubs also have a program giving free exams and glasses for low-income or un-insured children.
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