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New Kent

High School

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Mandated Screenings
     Speech, language, motor development, hearing, and vision are integral parts of student success in school. To complete this requirement New Kent County Public Schools will conduct speech-language, hearing, vision, and motor development screenings during the first few weeks of school. In addition, vision and hearing screenings will be assessed on all students in grades K, 3, 7, and 10. The speech pathologist, school nurse, clinic attendant, physical education teachers, and other appropriate school personnel will complete these screenings. It is through this screening process that potential problems can be identified and addressed prior to any adverse effect on school performance. You will be notified of the screening process results only if the need for further evaluation is indicated.

      Scoliosis Facts - Scoliosis is the abnormal curvature of the spine. While the normal spine has gentle natural curves that round the shoulders and make the lower back curve inward, scoliosis involves a deformity of the spinal column and rib cage. To varying degrees, the spine curves from side-to-side, and some of the spinal bones may rotate slightly, making the hips or shoulders appear uneven. This curving of the spine cannot be corrected by practicing good posture. It occurs in healthy school-age children, showing signs usually during the ages of 10-14 when a growth spurt may occur. The majority of scoliosis cases are caused from an unknown source. This condition may run in families and is seen more often in girls than boys. A large number of young people have minor curves that will not progress. Early screening and treatment may prevent scoliosis from progressing to a stage where it interferes with mobility or activities.

 Screening is done in grades 5 and 7. The screening procedure is a simple, painless process which takes about a minute. Boys should stand with shirts off and girls may wear a halter or bra. The screener observed the child’s spine, first in the standing position with arms freely dangling at the sides, and then with the child bending forward away from the screener with arms extended toward the floor. If the child’s shoulders, back or hips seem uneven further evaluation is recommended. Only a health care provider can diagnose scoliosis through examination and x-rays. If you do not want your child screened please contact the school for an opt-out form at registration.

      The type of treatment depends on the cause and how severe the curve. Spinal measurement is in degrees. Most curves remain small and need only to be monitored by the doctor for signs of progression. If a curve does progress, your physician may use an orthopedic brace to prevent it from worsening. Children who require the use of a brace can continue to participate in all social and physical activities. If a scoliosis curve is severe when first seen, or if treatment with a brace is ineffective, surgery may be necessary. In these cases, surgery has been found to be a highly effective and safe treatment.

Resources:

National Scoliosis Foundation  Call 800-673-6922

The Scoliosis Association, Inc.  Call 800-800-066
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