Transitions Optical Asks Caregivers to ‘Promise’ to Make Children’s Eye Health a Priority

PINELLAS PARK, Fla.—In order to increase the likelihood of families adding eye exams to their “back-to-school” plans, Transitions Optical has announced its ‘Promise’ initiative, a program encouraging parents and families to bring their children to a comprehensive eye exam prior to beginning school this fall. With each family’s submitted ‘promise’, Transitions will donate a new book to Bess the Book Bus, a mobile literacy initiative that services children and adults to promote reading. Bess the Book Bus founder Jennifer Frances and Transitions Optical hope that children, parents, caregivers and teachers will help spread the word by making the “ My Eye Promise.”

Some of the most common vision conditions among children, such as amblyopia (lazy eye), farsightedness and eye coordination, can only be detected with a comprehensive eye exam with an optometrist or ophthalmologist. A recent study showed that over one third of parents report that their children have never received an eye exam. Though students may receive basic vision tests at school, these screenings are not apt to assess vision acuity beyond distance, leaving more serious vision problems unnoticed. According to the American Public Health Association, one in four K-12 students have undetected vision problems that may be interfering with their ability to read and learn. Transitions intends to combat this problem.

“We are committed, along with our industry partners, to help reduce the number of undiagnosed vision conditions in children,” said Dan McLean, Transitions Optical marketing manager, communications.

Along with Transitions Optical, Bess the Book Bus founder Jennifer Frances is determined to spread the word about children’s eye health in an effort to get them reading. Whether at schools, community shelters, or other organizations, Frances travels across the country providing books to children in need, and has seen the frustration children face when they are unable to read due to undiagnosed vision conditions.

“I’ve seen first-hand how undiagnosed vision problems interfere not only with their reading skills, but also with their social interaction and confidence with their peers,” Frances said. “Through my partnership with Transitions Optical and the presence of its mobile clinic at many of Bess’ outreach events, it’s been wonderful to witness so many children receiving comprehensive eye exams and eyewear – the tools they need to develop a lifelong love of reading and learning.”

Bess the Book Bus is currently en route in the 2012 ‘Success in Sight’ tour, often accompanied by ‘Eyenstein,’ the mobile eye care clinic created by Transitions Optical and VSP Vision Care. Alongside Bess’ book giveaway, Eyenstein provides free eye exams and eyewear to children and families in underserved communities.

To make the “My Eye Promise” or learn more about the program, log on to and click “Submit Your Promise.” Schools may enter into the “My Eye Promise School Challenge” by clicking on “Join the School Challenge,” entering to win free eye care and eyewear from Transitions Optical, along with a visit from Bess the Book Bus to the school.