Screening FAQs

SCREENING NOTIFICATION

Is it necessary to notify parents/guardians of screenings conducted in the school?
Yes, information should be provided describing the type of screenings and grade levels as well as the process for notification and follow up. This can be done through memos, newsletters, websites or other communications shared with parents.

When and how should parents/guardians be informed of the results of screenings that will be conducted in school?
The Commissioner’s Regulations define what screenings are mandated and state “that the results of all such screening examinations shall be in writing and shall be provided to the pupil's parent or person in parental relation and to any teacher of the pupil within the school while the pupil is enrolled in the school”.

DOCUMENTATION FROM A HEALTH EXAMINATION

May the screening results reported on a private health certificate be used and recorded as the mandated screening for the school year?
If the physician, nurse practitioner or physician’s assistant notes the screening results in a manner that indicates an adequate screening has been completed, you may transcribe the results from the physical to the student’s cumulative health record. The student would not need to be screened again at school. The examiner would need to note the screening results such as: “20/20 R, 20/20 L” – or in a similar format rather than just writing “Pass”. Hearing screening should read: “Pass 20db sc” for the screening to indicate that a sweep check was done at 20 decibels. If the examiner simply writes “Pass” you can’t be sure of what screening was done and the reported results should not be used for the school screening. 

May the school medical director delegate vision, hearing, scoliosis, blood pressure and any other locally determined screening which is part of the health appraisal?
Screening is the responsibility of the school medical director but may be delegated in writing to the school nurse if they so choose.(Education Law, Article 19, § 905, (1).) Such delegation should be in written policy. The results are recorded on the student’s CHR prior to the physical examination.

WHAT IS REQUIRED

GRADE LEVEL AND TIMING
According to Article 19, section (§) 905 and Commissioner’s Regulation 136.3, Health Appraisals and screenings are required for new students and at mandated grade levels. The NYSCSH Screening and Health Examination Guideline Overview Chart highlights requirements by grade level. Click here to view it. 

The required screenings are:

  • Scoliosis screening for girls in grades 5 & 7 and boys in grade 9.
  • Vision screening for distance, near vision acuity & color perception required within 6 months of admission to school; distance & near vision acuity in grades Pre K or K, 1, 3, 5, 7, 11 and at any other time deemed necessary.
  • Hearing screening to all students within six months of admission to the school and in grades Kindergarten, 1, 3, 5, 7 and 11, and at any other time deemed necessary. 

Are height and weight measurements part of mandate screening?
No, Height and weight assessment by the school is not a required screening based on Commissioner's Regulation 136.3(e). 

WHO MAY COMPLETE SCREENINGS?

What licensure is required to complete the screenings?
Commissioner’s Regulation 136.3 (e)(2) states: The results of all health screenings (dental, hearing, vision and scoliosis) shall be recorded on appropriate forms which shall be kept on file in the school. The trustees or board of education shall ensure that the health professional making the examination shall sign the cumulative health record and make appropriate recommendations.  Education Law Article 19 Section 902 defines a health professional: "health professionals" means persons duly licensed or otherwise authorized to practice a health profession pursuant to applicable law, including, but not limited to, physicians, registered professional nurses, nurse practitioners, physicians assistants, optometrists, dentists, dental hygienists, dietitians and nutritionists, and audiologists.

Is an LPN is allowed to complete screenings "under the direction" of an RN?
Yes, if they have been appropriately trained by the RN on how to conduct the screening, they may do so and document the results.

May a chiropractor return the screening failure notification for scoliosis to the school health office?
Yes, this is within the scope of practice for a chiropractor.

Can volunteers provide the screening for vision or hearing?
Only if they meet the requirements for licensure as defined by CR 136.3.

Updated 10/29/18