ERIC Number: EJ1119672
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Dec
Abstractor: As Provided
School Context Matters: The Impacts of Concentrated Poverty and Racial Segregation on Childhood Obesity
Piontak, Joy Rayanne; Schulman, Michael D.
Journal of School Health, v86 n12 p864-872 Dec 2016
Background: Schools are important sites for interventions to prevent childhood obesity. This study examines how variables measuring the socioeconomic and racial composition of schools and counties affect the likelihood of obesity among third to fifth grade children. Methods: Body mass index data were collected from third to fifth grade public school students by teachers from 317 urban and rural North Carolina schools in 38 counties. Multilevel models are used to examine county-, school-, and individual-level effects. Results: Low concentrations of poverty at the school level are associated with lower odds of obesity. Schools in rural counties had significantly higher rates of obesity, net the other variables in the model. Students in minority-segregated schools had higher rates of obesity than those in more racially diverse schools, but the effect was not statistically significant once school-level poverty was controlled. Conclusions: Place-based inequalities are important determinants of health inequalities. The results of this study show that school-level variables related to poverty are important for understanding and confronting childhood obesity.
Descriptors: Educational Environment, Obesity, Statistical Analysis, Elementary School Students, Body Composition, Elementary School Teachers, Poverty, Physical Health, Socioeconomic Status, Racial Composition, Institutional Characteristics, Rural Schools, Urban Schools, Counties, Measurement, Correlation, Minority Group Students, School Segregation
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education
Sponsor: National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: North Carolina
Grant or Contract Numbers: 1007488