Baby with paint

We often partner with local agencies and groups to provide hearing, vision and developmental screenings to the public. Common locations for families to participate include the public library, recreation center, Community Connections, local child care providers and the Ketchikan Gymnastics Club.

If you have a suggestion for a screening location please contact Early Learning at (907) 225-7825.

Hearing Screenings

Otoacoustic emissions (OAE’s) are sounds given off by the inner ear when the cochlea is stimulated by a sound. When sound stimulates the cochlea, the outer hair cells vibrate. The vibration produces a nearly inaudible sound that echoes back into the middle ear. The sound can be measured with a small probe inserted into the ear canal.

People with normal hearing produce emissions. Those with hearing loss greater than 25–30 decibels (dB) do not produce these very soft sounds. The OAE test is often part of a newborn hearing screening program. This test can detect blockage in the outer ear canal, as well as the presence of middle ear fluid and damage to the outer hair cells in the cochlea.

Vision Screenings

This photo-screening is used to detect the presence of risk factors for amblyopia, a decrease in the child’s vision that can happen even when there is no problem with the structure of the eye. The decrease in vision results when one or both eyes send a blurry image to the brain.

The brain then “learns” to only see blurry with that eye, even when glasses are used. Amblyopia is commonly known as “lazy eye”. This screening is important because, if caught early, amblyopia can be treated. If it is not treated, it can cause permanent loss of vision.

Developmental Screenings

As part of the Watch Me Grow program, parents or other caregivers can use the Ages and Stages Questionnaires (ASQ) to track their child’s development and find out if they are meeting their developmental milestones on time or if there is a delay. The questionnaires are quick and easy to fill out and can provide valuable information about your child’s developmental progress.

Fill out the social-emotional questionnaire to help you keep track of your child’s social-emotional development, with the support of developmental specialists.

Fill out this language-motor-social questionnaire to help you keep track of your child’s development in language, motor, independence, and social skills with the support of developmental specialists.