Did you know?
More than half (52%) of parents believe that every child has a full sight test at primary school, and don’t understand the limitations of what is offered. Here are some simple messages for parents and carers of children at school:
- A full sight test with an optometrist is more thorough than vision screening – it includes an eye health check that can detect signs of disease, and can identify colour deficiency and different types of refractive errors
- Vision screening for 4-5 year olds is inconsistently delivered across the UK, with many Local Authorities not offering any service at all
- Vision screening is poor at identifying hyperopia and astigmatism which are common and significant refractive errors
- Children should be taken for a sight test from about the age of three, or earlier when clinically necessary
- All children can have an NHS-funded sight test once a year if needed and more often if clinically necessary
- Orthoptists sometimes see children through school visits, if this is outside the screening programmes it won’t provide a vision check to the child that is based on an agreed protocol