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Sandra S Block, Melissa Suckow, Adrianna M Hempelmann, Julia Gwynne, Valerie Michelman, Paul Moore; Comparison of Academic Performance Data in Chicago Public Schools (CPS) Students Gathered Prior to and After A Vision and Eye Health Exam. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2015;56(7 ):2950.
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The purpose of this retrospective study was to compare standardized academic test scores, course grades and attendance in school for CPS students who attended the IEI at Princeton Vision Clinic. Academic data from prior to the exam and data after the student received an eye exam was used.
Longitudinal CPS data from 2007 - 2014 was integrated with vision data from 14,663 CPS students who presented to the IEI at Princeton school-based vision clinic from Jan, 2011-Dec, 2013. The vision clinic serves low income students in schools surrounding the clinic. Children are brought to the clinic by schools (bus) or guardians (walk-in). The clinic provides comprehensive exams including refraction & cycloplege/dilated exam. Data was extrapolated from student records and matched to individual vision data. Preliminary modeling was conducted using a student fixed effects model to estimate within-student change in outcome following attending the clinic is looking to see if the vision intervention had any effect on student performance.
Test scores improve significantly (SD-0.05 reading, p <0.1; SD-0.07; math, p<0.05). No significant main effects on grades was seen; however, high school students did show significant increase in grades (0.1, pl<0.001). Fewer absences after visiting the clinic were seen (-0.14, p<0.001). The estimates found may be considered as causal. A preliminary model controling for changes that may be associated with outcomes of interest and with attending the clinic (e.g., eligibility special ed. and school mobility) and includes all CPS students for precision. All standard errors are clustered by student.
Conclusions: No significant effects on course grades were seen in the main specification; however, high school students experience an increase in grades. Students had significantly fewer absences after visiting the clinic. The relative gains seen are preliminary and it is hoped that as the analysis looks in more depth to specific type and magnitude of refractive error, previous experience history of refractive correction, along with other visual diagnoses the effect will demonstrate more specifically the impact of vision corrections on academic performance in specific vision problems.
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