EYE OPENER: New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has teamed up with Warby Parker to provide a free pair of glasses to every needy student in 130 schools around the city.
DeBlasio estimated that under the terms of the partnership, the eyeglass retailer will donate approximately 20,000 pairs of glasses over the next four years.
“For thousands of children who are ready to learn, but whose vision may be holding them back, the future just got clearer and brighter,” de Blasio said. “This is a great new partnership — one of many we are building between homegrown tech companies like Warby Parker and the city to invest in our young people and our future.”
Dave Gilboa, cofounder and cochief executive officer of Warby Parker, said this initiative is the company’s way to actively address vision disability among American children, an issue he called “the single most prevalent disabling condition among children in the United States.”
His coceo Neil Blumenthal added: “Our goal is to provide these students with their first pair of glasses for free so they can experience the immediate and direct positive impact that a pair of glasses can have on their life, especially academics.”
To identify the students in need, the city will expand its vision screening program to all 130 Community Schools, meaning 65,000 more students will get exams. Community Schools are neighborhood schools designed to provide high-quality academic instruction to students and help their families access social services.