What other screenings are done in school?

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Postural Screening 

Postural screening to assess for  scoliosis is conducted for all students in grades 5-9.  The purpose of this state mandated screening is to detect early signs of spinal problems that may require further evaluation.  You will be notified of any abnormal findings and referred to your healthcare provider for follow up. Families can request a religious exemption from postural screenings by submitting a letter to the school nurse. If a parent/guardian requests an exemption on other grounds, written documentation from the student's primary care provider must be provided including the date of postural screening and results.

Body Mass Index

Massachusetts regulations require screening for Body Mass Index (BMI). Your child's height and weight will be measured using guidelines provided by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and his/her BMI calculated. If you choose not to have your child screened for BMI, you may do so by stating your preference in writing to your school nurse. 


In March, 2016, the Massachusetts Legislature enacted an Act relative to substance use, treatment, education and prevention (STEP Act) which outlines the requirements for public schools in the Commonwealth to engage in substance use screening and education. Legislation can be found here (see Sections 15, 63, 64, 66).

Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) focuses on prevention, early detection, risk assessment, brief counseling and referral for assessment that can be utilized in the school setting. Use of a validated screening tool enables school health teams to detect risk for substance use related problems and brief intervention strategies will help to address these concerns at an early stage in adolescents. Students are screened annually in 7th and 9th grades. More information.