Governor Laura Kelly Signs Bill Providing Children with Free, Basic Vision Screenings in Schools

Bipartisan Legislation Improves Quality of Vision and Hearing Services in Kansas

TOPEKA – Governor Laura Kelly signed Senate Bill 62, a bipartisan bill that amends standards for free school-administered vision screenings and establishes the Kansas Children’s Vision Health and School Readiness Commission.

“Early detection of vision issues in children helps educators assess and address the needs of students promptly,” Governor Kelly said. “It is critical we address these issues early on — especially if a student has shown signs of reading difficulty, to ensure our kids continue to learn to their fullest potential and find success in the classroom.”

In addition to updated standards, SB62 creates the Kansas Children’s Vision Health and School Readiness Commission, an eight-member commission appointed by the State Board of Education to oversee the state’s vision screening requirements. It will also assist Kansas families in finding free or low-cost eye exams if a student fails an initial vision screening and cannot afford the services on their own.

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SB62 also ensures sign language interpreters are held to a standard just as other licensed professionals, so Kansans who are deaf or hard of hearing receive quality service from interpreters.

“The passage of SB 62 is a significant milestone for Kansas Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing in its 40-year history,” Robert Cooper, Executive Director of the Kansas Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, said. “SB62 aims at improving communication access and services for deaf and hard of hearing Kansans, building on the work and advocacy we have provided the community since KCDHH was first established by the Legislature in 1982.”

More information about SB62 can be found here.

Governor Kelly also signed the below bipartisan legislation.

H Sub for SB 101
Approves the operation and use of electric-assisted bicycles and regulates the use thereof.

Establishes requirements for the payment and reimbursement of dental services by a dental benefit plan.

Updates the version of risk-based capital instructions in effect.

Clarifies the time limitations for habeas corpus claims, requiring earlier notice of anticipated release from custody of a person who may be a sexually violent predator to the attorney general and a multidisciplinary team and specifying where such person will be detained during civil commitment proceedings.

Enacts the pharmacy benefits manager licensure act and requiring licensure rather than registration of such entities.

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Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2020 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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