Supporting Development of Healthy Schools Across Canada
Hot off the presses! We have released a second Canadian edition of the Healthy School Report Card action tool. Developed by ASCD's Healthy School Communities (HSC), the publication was coauthored by prominent experts in the fields of health and education: David K. Lohrmann, Sandra Vamos, and Paul Yeung. But you may be asking yourself: Why did we develop a Canadian edition and why did we move to a second edition?
Firstly, why a Canadian edition?
Simply because the systems, contexts, and culture of schools above the U.S. border are different than those below it. Each country has its own terminology, policies, and pedagogical approaches, so it makes sense to be able to adjust the successful Healthy School Report Card (designed originally for U.S. schools) to better suit the Canadian context.
Secondly, why a second edition?
The Healthy School Report Card was updated as a result of our HSC pilot study across 12 sites in the United States and Canada. Along with the lists of resources and policy requirements being updated, the report card has also been adjusted to highlight what was learned from the pilot study. Namely that for change to be truly sustainable, it needs to be whole school, integrated, and continuously flow back into the school improvement process. The second edition has also been aligned to the 2010 monograph The Healthy School Communities Model: Aligning Health and Education in the School Setting (PDF), which sets out the nine levers of change for successful implementation and sustainability.
Both the Canadian and U.S. version are available as either hard or electronic (PDF) copy, and both provide access to the Online Analysis Tool that allows schools to obtain color-coded results for every characteristic, short- and long-term planning guides, trend lines, and comparison charts. Schools that use the Healthy School Report Card can learn from the successes of others as they transform their setting and processes by becoming associate sites and requesting to become mentor or mentee sites.
The Healthy School Report Card helps align health and education and allows schools—as was said by Ontario's Iroquois Ridge High School then principal, Jacqueline Newton—to ensure that "every stakeholder feels responsible for the success of the school, the community as a whole comes together to steward change and sustain culture. In this collaborative model, the entire community owns the culture."