School Health Services
Good health and academic success go hand in hand. Quality health education programs help students achieve their highest academic potential and grow into successful adults who are productive members of their communities. Formal, structured health education consists of any combination of planned learning experiences that provide the opportunity to acquire the information and skills students need to make quality health decisions.
Health Education – A planned, sequential, K – 12 health education curriculum addresses the physical, mental, emotional and social dimensions of health. The curriculum should be designed to motivate and assist students to maintain and improve their health, prevent disease, and reduce health-related risk behaviors. The comprehensive health education curriculum includes a variety of topics such as personal health, family health, community health, consumer healthy, environmental health, sexuality education, HIV/STD and unintended pregnancy prevention, mental and emotional health, injury prevention and safety, nutrition, prevention and control of disease, and substance use and abuse.
Health Services – School health services intervene with actual and potential health problems, including providing first aid, emergency care and assessment and planning for the management of chronic conditions (such as asthma or diabetes). Health services also connect school staff, students, families, community and healthcare providers to promote the health care of students and a healthy and safe school environment. School health services actively collaborate with school and community support services to increase the ability of students and families to adapt to health and social stressors, such as chronic health conditions or social and economic barriers to health, and to be able to manage these stressors and advocate for their own health and learning needs.
Health & Academics
The academic success of America’s youth is strongly linked with their health, and is one way to predict adult health outcomes.
Schools are the Right Place for a Healthy Start
Schools play a critical role in promoting the health and safety of young people and helping them establish lifelong healthy behaviors. Research shows that school health programs reduce the prevalence of health risk behaviors among youth and have a positive effect on academic performance.13 CDC analyzes research findings to develop strategies for schools to address health risk behaviors among students and creates tools to help schools implement these strategies.
Video: Back-to-School: A Time to Think about Health & Academics
Why is it important for a student to feel connected to school?
Scientists who study youth health and behavior have learned that strong connections at school can help young people
• Get better grades
• Have higher test scores
• Stay in school longer
• Attend school more regularly
In addition, students who feel connected to their school are less likely to
• Smoke cigarettes
• Drink alcohol
• Have sexual intercourse
• Carry a weapon or become involved in violence
• Be injured from drinking and driving or not wearing seat belts
• Have emotional distress or eating disorders
• Consider or attempt suicide
Health Education and Health Services are two components of the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) model. The Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) model uses an integrated, collaborative approach to address barriers and supports related to learning and health. For more information about the WSCC model, visit https://www.cdc.gov/healthyschools/wscc/index.htm.