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ERIC Number: ED573147
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jun
Pages: 32
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Supporting Learning through Better Health: A Strategy to Ensure Adequate and Stable Funding for School-Based Health Centers in New York State
Rebell, MIchael A.
Campaign for Educational Equity, Teachers College, Columbia University
The extensive education reforms that state and national policymakers have instituted in recent years have tended to overlook the reality that poor health can substantially undermine students' academic success, especially for students from low-income households. Although children in low-income communities on average have greater health needs, they are much less likely to have access to regular medical, mental health, and oral health care. School-based health centers (SBHCs) can help solve this problem. Evaluations of SBHC programs conducted since the model was implemented 40 years ago have demonstrated that SBHCs increase access to care and improve both health and academic outcomes. The major reason there are so few SBHCs is that the funding available to support them is both inadequate and unstable. To fill the gap between the insufficient funding that SBHCs now receive and the actual cost of operating SBHCs that can provide necessary and appropriate services to all students in a public school, a system that can guarantee sufficient school wide funding (GSSF) is needed. The financing strategy proposed is designed to ensure sufficient stable funding for existing SBHCs, promote strong growth in the number of SBHCs operating throughout the state and result in improved delivery of health services and greater school success for students from low-income households. The GSSF system maximizes federal reimbursements and private insurance payments, while reducing the proportion of overall SBHC funding that the state now provides. It will also promote full compliance with applicable federal and state laws, in a cost-effective manner. Recommended actions for the state are detailed to implement a guaranteed self sufficient school wide funding system for school-based health centers. They include the following: (1) provision of an adequate annual per-student rate; (2) expansion of services covered; (3) maximization of federal and private insurance reimbursements; (4) acquiring necessary federal waivers; and (5) establishment of a GSSF demonstration project. Adoption of the GSSF system would require a number of changes in state laws and regulations and a number of Medicaid waivers and legal changes. [This report was written with editorial assistance from Jessica R. Wolff, and research assistance from Linda Moon. The James and Judith K. Dimon foundation supported this research.]
Campaign for Educational Equity, Teachers College, Columbia University. Box 219, 525 West 120th Street, New York, NY 10027. Tel: 646-745-8282; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Columbia University, Campaign for Educational Equity
Identifiers - Location: New York