§ Mr. McEntee
asked the Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Education what number of school children in England and Wales were medically examined during the latest recorded 12 months; and what was the percentage found to be suffering from defective vision?
During the year 1937, the latest year for which figures are available, 1,700,078 elementary school children were 915W examined at routine medical inspections. Of these, 571,082 were in the first age-group (entrants to school), and the vision of such young children is not usually tested unless there are obvious signs of defects. 85,424 children examined at routine inspections during the year were found to be suffering from defective vision (excluding squint) which required treatment, and a further 46,141 were referred for observations. The total of 131,565 represents 11.66 per cent. of the number of routine medical inspections, excluding the first age-group. In addition, 68,180 children were referred for treatment for defective vision, and 16,267 for observation, as the result of special inspections.
The number of children found in 1937 to be suffering from squint was 21,606 at routine inspections and 16,169 at special inspections.