ERIC Number: EJ1058453
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-May
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 37
Developing and Sustaining a Healthy School Community: Essential Elements Identified by School Health Champions
Stolp, Sean; Wilkins, Emma; Raine, Kim D.
Health Education Journal, v74 n3 p299-311 May 2015
Background: Comprehensive School Health (CSH) approaches to developing a healthy school community can be effective in supporting chronic disease prevention while positively impacting on student behaviour and academic performance. Although a CSH framework provides principles for action, there is a lack of evidence regarding the processes that best facilitate CSH work, and enable action. Objective: The purpose of this study was to identify and describe the elements of practice-based evidence that contribute to the success and sustainability of healthy school communities, through the identification of positive practices and lessons learned from a sample of projects in Alberta, Canada. Setting: School communities in Alberta, Canada. Design and methods: Key individuals from a list of operating CSH projects were invited for interview. An exploratory, qualitative design examined the perspectives of these "school health champions". A total of 12 one-on-one interviews and one focus group with seven participants were completed, resulting in input from 19 individuals in total. Results: Elements to develop and sustain a healthy school community fall into one of two categories: (1) stakeholder buy-in and (2) adequate resources in the form of human resources, partnerships and peer support. Participants identified successful strategies for establishing buy-in from administrators, teachers, parents and students. Conclusion: To effectively mobilise a comprehensive school health framework, practical strategies for implementation are needed. While some of these strategies are context-specific, practice-based evidence that transcends the local context does exist and can be used more widely to support the development of a healthy school community.
Descriptors: School Health Services, Foreign Countries, Qualitative Research, Focus Groups, Stakeholders, Participation, Human Resources, Cooperation, Peer Influence, Administrator Role, Teacher Role, Student Role, Semi Structured Interviews, Coding, Educational Environment, Health Promotion, Rural Schools, Urban Schools, School Districts, Educational Resources, Elementary Secondary Education
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada