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School district starts dental checks
new deh usd 428 dental story pic
Amanda Swindle, a dental hygeinist from GraceMed in Wichita, examines the teeth of Lincoln School kindergartener Aidan Hesley during a dental screening on Tuesday. Its been a while since the district participated in the free exams because until now there has been no provider. Parents had the opportunity to opt out of the inspection for their children. - photo by COURTESY PHOTO

It’s one time when kids are encouraged to open their mouths.
In a scene reminiscent of bygone days, local school children lined up Tuesday for their annual dental inspection, paused long enough for a dental hygienist to have a quick look inside their mouths and were handed a report of the findings to take home to their parents.
Although it’s been a state education statute since 1915, Dan Brungartdt, USD 428 assistant superintendent, said it has been a number of years since dental exams of schoolchildren have been made locally.
“We try to comply with all the statutes,” Brungardt said, noting that some are easier than others. For instance, the Pledge of Allegiance is recited daily in accordance with the law because school principals make sure it happens.
“The requirement for free dental inspections is dependent on someone providing the service,” he said. “It was done a lot in the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s because there was a service provider provided to do the examinations.” 
Brungardt said the reason that the exams haven’t been done in recent years, is because there was not a service provider available. GraceMed in Wichita conducted the dental inspections and provides health and dental care to underserved populations in Wichita, Sedgwick County and south central Kansas.