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A07502
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
HOUSE BILL
No.
1342
Session of
2019
INTRODUCED BY BROWN, PICKETT, READSHAW, KAUFFMAN, SCHLOSSBERG,
MURT, SCHLEGEL CULVER, BARRAR, MILLARD, STRUZZI, DeLUCA,
TOOHIL, MEHAFFIE, SCHWEYER, KINSEY, RADER, T. DAVIS, BOBACK,
MACKENZIE, CIRESI, YOUNGBLOOD AND DEASY, APRIL 29, 2019
REFERRED TO COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION, APRIL 29, 2019
AN ACT
Amending the act of March 10, 1949 (P.L.30, No.14), entitled "An
act relating to the public school system, including certain
provisions applicable as well to private and parochial
schools; amending, revising, consolidating and changing the
laws relating thereto," in school health services, further
providing for health services and providing for vision
screening and examinations.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. Section 1402(a) of the act of March 10, 1949
(P.L.30, No.14), known as the Public School Code of 1949, is
amended to read:
Section 1402. Health Services.--(a) Each child of school
age shall be given by methods established by the Advisory Health
Board, [(1) a vision test by a school nurse, medical technician
or teacher,] (2)] (1) a hearing test by a school nurse or
medical technician, [(3)] (2) a measurement of height and weight
by a school nurse or teacher, who shall use the measurement to
compute a child's weight-for-height ratio, [(4)] (3) tests for
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tuberculosis under medical supervision, and [(5)] (4) such other
tests as the Advisory Health Board may deem advisable to protect
the health of the child. [Vision tests shall be given at least
annually and other tests at intervals established by the
Advisory Health Board.]
* * *
Section 2. The act is amended by adding a section to read:
Section 1403.1. Vision Screening and Examinations.--(a) (1)
Within thirty (30) days of the start of the school year at a
public, private, parochial or nonpublic school in this
Commonwealth, including special education and home education
programs and cyber and charter schools or upon entry into the
school district, the parent or legal guardian of a child
entering kindergarten Prior to admission to school for the first
time, a parent or legal guardian shall present to school health
personnel the school entity or nonpublic school certification
from a primary care provider or vision screener that the child
within the previous twelve months passed has passed or failed a
vision screening performed by a primary care provider or a
vision screening conducted by screeners with specific training
in vision screening techniques and protocols approved by the
Department of Health or has completed a comprehensive eye exam
conducted by an ophthalmologist or optometrist within the
previous twelve months .
(2) The Advisory Health Board shall promulgate regulations
to establish vision screening standards based on instrument-
based vision screening technologies or visual acuity testing,
taking into consideration national guidelines from the American
Academy of Pediatrics.
(b) (1) Every school year at a public, private, parochial
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or nonpublic school in this Commonwealth, including special
education and home education programs and cyber and charter
schools school entity or nonpublic school , until a child
completes the fifth grade and every two years thereafter until
the child graduates from the twelfth grade, the child shall have
a vision screening performed by school health personnel or
screeners with specific training in vision screening techniques
and protocols approved by the Advisory Health Board. The results
of the vision screening shall be supplied to the parent or legal
guardian of the child.
(2) For a child who fails a required vision screening, a
comprehensive eye examination, performed by an ophthalmologist
or optometrist, shall also be required. Notification of the
parent or legal guardian of the failed screening shall be
accompanied by notification of requirement for a comprehensive
examination that must be completed within one hundred twenty
(120) days or before the start of the next school year,
whichever comes first. Notification should may also include a
form, to be completed by the examining ophthalmologist or
optometrist, to be used for reporting the results of the
examination. The report shall may include, but not be limited
to, the following:
(i) Date of report.
(ii) Name, address and date of birth of the child.
(iii) Name of the child's school.
(iv) A summary of significant findings, including best
corrected visual acuity, diagnosis, treatment, prognosis,
whether or not a return visit is recommended and, if so, when.
(v) Recommended educational adjustments for the child, if
any, which may include preferential seating in the classroom,
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eyeglasses for full-time use in school, eyeglasses for part-time
use in school, sight-saving eyeglasses or any other
recommendations.
(vi) Name, address and signature of the examiner.
(3) The examination report shall may be accompanied by an
envelope for return of the form to school health personnel so
the completion status and result of the examination under
subsection (b)(2) may be recorded.
(c) No child shall be denied admission or excluded from
attending school for the reason that the parent or legal
guardian failed to furnish a report of the child's vision
screening or to have an examination completed upon failure of
the vision screening. Parents and guardians that fail to present
the required report shall be notified in writing of the required
vision examination every three months until the examination
completion has been verified. A parent or legal guardian who
fails to present the required report within a year of a failed
exam shall be notified by the school entity or nonpublic school
of, to the extent available, vision resources.
(d) A school entity or nonpublic school shall not be
required to provide comprehensive eye examination or held
financially responsible for the treatment of a child who fails
the required vision screening.
(e) This section shall apply to school years beginning after
the regulations are promulgated by the Advisory Health Board
under subsection (a)(2).
(f) As used in this section, the following words and phrases
shall have the meanings given to them in this subsection unless
the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Nonpublic school." As defined in section 922.1-A.
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"School entity." A school district, charter school, regional
charter school, cyber charter school, intermediate unit or area
career and technical school.
Section 3. This act shall take effect in 60 days.
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