Carter In The Classroom

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Texans Can Academies

Eye Clinic Class Helps Students Learn & Receive Vision Care

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In a brightly lit room, which looks like a cross between a doctor's office and a manufacturing lab, miracles are made. No matter what angle you look at it, you'll see something amazing.

We'll start with Dr. Gayle Daniels, an optometrist who knocked on the door of a school and asked if she could volunteer and teach.

"It's a passion of mine to teach a skill," Daniels said. "A gentleman who worked in my lab, I was told, had only gone to the sixth grade. But someone taught him how to be an optician, how to cut glasses in the back. I realized this school probably had a lot of Roberts."

She helped raise the money to buy equipment. She now teaches and her lab is staffed by students at Texans Can Academy in Fort Worth. They take measurements for the doctor and then actually make the lenses she prescribes.

"You won't master it in the first few days or weeks but over time you will learn it," one student told us.

The patients are fellow students who don't have health insurance and may not be doing well in school because they simply can't see. The students not only see them as patients but also their families.

"This little girl, she really needed glasses. They were broken and she had them holding up by rubber bands and tape," student Cesar Rios recalled. "When I gave her the glasses she put them on and was like, 'wow.' She looked at her dad and was like, 'dad I can see.'"

The students were making glasses recently that would get sent to a mission in Honduras. They're helping lots of people, but also themselves.

Many of the students at Texans Can Academy struggled in traditional high schools, some even were kicked out. They came here, and the rest, you can clearly see.

Several of the students say they plan to work in a doctor's office while they're in college to help pay for their expenses while in school.

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