Health and Learning News and Updates
Survey: Only 23 Percent Want Feds to Set Child Nutrition Standards: A Rasmussen Reports survey of U.S. adults found that 23 percent said the federal government should set nutritional standards for public schools, while 31 percent said they want parent-teacher groups to do it and 17 percent said it should be left to state governments. Data showed that 53 percent of adults said they followed reports about the childhood-nutrition law at least somewhat closely.
More States Are Allowing PE Waivers or Substitutions: The number of states that allow students to substitute extracurricular activities or otherwise opt out of physical education has increased since 2006 from 27 to 32, data show. One physical education professor says a push for students to take more academic courses and districts' efforts to save money are behind the trend, which occurs amid greater worry about childhood obesity.
Better Grades May Mean Better Health: Findings from a study published in the December Journal of Health and Social Behavior support already existing evidence that links higher student achievement with long-term health. The study shows that not only is there a correlation between greater educational attainment and physical well-being, but also that a higher level of academic performance proved to be a significant factor as well. Read more.
Promising District Practices: Are you looking for strategies that schools and districts across the United States are using to effectively address school health? The National School Boards Association's (NSBA) Promising District Practices website shares success stories addressing a wide range of school health–related policies and practices in a practical and easily accessible way.
Enhancing Student Learning by Supporting a Coordinated Approach to Health: Whole Child Partners NSBA and the American School Health Association (ASHA), with ASHA's Council for Administrative Support for School Health, have developed parallel documents to help school boards and administrators enhance student learning by supporting a coordinated approach to health. The documents can be used to communicate how school board and administrator support for a coordinated approach to health contributes to academic achievement and why and how school leaders should have a coordinated approach to the health of students.
Youth Substance Use Interventions: Where Do They Fit Into a School's Mission? This report addresses differences between use and abuse and briefly summarizes some major issues and data relevant to substance use and treatment of abuse and dependency. It also highlights the importance of adopting a broad perspective in understanding the causes of substance problems seen at schools.
Reducing Risk Behaviors by Promoting Positive Youth Development: The National Institutes of Health is offering grants to institutions and organizations that "propose to enhance our understanding of effective positive youth development programs and the mechanisms responsible for positive health and developmental outcomes." Award amounts vary and eligible applicants are public or state controlled or private institutions of higher education; nonprofit organizations with or without 501(c)(3) IRS status; for-profit organizations; and various other organizations, including non-U.S. entities. Deadline: February 5, 2011.
School Employee Wellness Awards Program: The Directors of Health Promotion and Education (DHPE)is now accepting applications for the 2010–11 School Employee Wellness Awards Program that recognizes schools and school districts that implement school employee wellness programs. Monetary awards will be granted in the amounts of $250 (bronze), $500 (silver), and $1,000 (gold) to be reinvested in their employee wellness programs. Review an archived webinar from DHPE that further explains the grant application process. Application materials must be postmarked by February 1, 2011.
Get Green With Planet Connect: Interested in integrating environmental health awareness into your school? Planet Connect announces the 2011 Get Green Video Contest. In partnership with the Leaders of Environmental Action Films, the Get Green Video Contest is asking U.S. high school students to make a 30–120 second video that shows how everyday actions impact the ocean. Deadline: February 23, 2011.
Healthy School Communities is a worldwide ASCD effort to promote the integration of health and learning and the benefits of school-community collaboration. It is part of a large, multiyear plan to shift public dialogue about education from a narrow, curriculum-centric and accountability system focus to a whole child approach that encompasses all factors required for successful student outcomes. Visit the Healthy School Communities group on ASCD EDge and share everything from ideas and solutions to common concerns.