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Focusing on Healthy Behaviors Helps Strengthen Curriculum and Develop Life Skills in Students

Hou-Long Junior High School, Miaoli County, Taiwan

Hou-Long Junior High School is an old school located in the outskirts of Miaoli County, Taiwan. Students are generally from low socioeconomic status families, thus the function of family is incomplete. As a result over thirty teachers often volunteer to take on the partial role of parent for many of these students. In addition, the school has made efforts to attend to the health needs of teachers and students by designating health topics to focus on each year to strengthen the curriculum and develp life skills in students. This yearly topic focus has helped the school establish school health promotion modules for the following topics: sex education, correct medication, healthy body mass index, and tobacco hazard control. The overall development of healthy behaviors in the school has required a lot of time and effort, but the school administrators expect it will be worth it in the end because it will help establish better motivation, atmosphere, and curriculum design that will give teachers, students and families a more healthy and supportive environment. This school was awarded the 2012 Silver Health Promoting School International Accreditation from the Health Promotion Administration, Ministry of Health and Welfare, for its comprehensive efforts to improve health services and enhance the daily lives of teafchers and students.
 

School Program Helps Students Reach Their Full Potential

Canberra Secondary School, Singapore

This school aspires to develop students to their full potential—to teach them the right values, create a mindset for excellence, and nurture them to be responsible and caring citizens.  The Character Development Committee at this school put in place a structured program to enhance students' social emotional competencies. At the beginning of the year the Committee—after assessing student social emotional competencies—determines student social emotional needs. The Committee plans social emotional workshops and wellbeing periods to help them work on the needed skills. The workshops at this school were aimed at providing students with strategies to understand their strengths and weakness, teach them skills to help them cope with transition and change management, as well as encourage them to accept responsibility, and look ahead to the future. The wellness lessons helped their students develop self-awareness and self-management skills that will help them achieve personal overall wellbeing. The program served as a platform for teacher-student interaction and helped to develop camaraderie among students. At the end of the year students evaluate their competencies, which is then used to evaluate the program. The Wellbeing Program at Canberra Secondary School is a Singapore Health Promotion Board Platinum CHERISH Award winner for its efforts to improve student overall health and wellbeing.

School Camp Helps Students Learn Healthy Habits

Yishun Secondary School, Singapore

Yishun Secondary School conducts needs assessment for students annually. Physical measurements at the beginning of the year shows school leaders which students need a little extra help to learn about and stay healthy. The school offers students the opportunity to participate in the Keep in Shape Through Sports (KISS) camp to educate students on their diet and ensure students are physically active. To ensure the effectiveness of the program, school leaders provide support by allocating funds to the program and monitoring school foods to provide only healthy food and drinks. Physical education teachers were excused from other school duties to conduct the program and parent involvement helped ensure the program's effectiveness. As a result of the program, around 30% of the overweight students passed their physical proficiency test and 85% of the students who participated in the camp lost weight beacuse they better understood how their diet and exercise affected their weight. In addition, the program evaluations and feedback was very positive from both parents and students. Yishun Secondary's KISS camp received the Singapore Health Promotion Board CHERISH Platinum Award for efforts to improve student health and develop life long healthy habits.

At this School Every Student and Staff Member Develops Both their Mind and Body

Kaohsiung Industrial High School, Kaohsiung City, Taiwan

Established in 1942, Kaohsiung Industrial High School is dedicated to offering a comfortable, secure, and pleasant learning environment that ensures every student and staff member obtains sound developments in mind and body. The administration actively implements health-promoting programs on sanitary policy, material environment, social environment, health education curriculums, community relationships, and health services. The school offers more than 30 student sports clubs, which offers holistic campaigns to help enhance not only their physical fitness but also their emotional, social, spiritual and cultural fitness. Moreover, Kaohsiung Industrial High School has been awarded a 2012 International Accrediation of Health Promoting School from the Health Promotion Administration, Ministry of Health and Welfare for its continued efforts to carry out life education, moral education, family education,  and depression and suicide prevention education that equips students with a healthy and supportive school campus.

Individualized Learning Shapes Successful Students

Dubbo School of Distance Education, Dubbo, New South Wales, Australia
 

Dubbo School of Distance Education has been designated a MindMatters school by whole child partner Principals Australia Institute. The school, centered in Dubbo, Australia, provides individualized distance education options for students in preschool through 12th grade who are either unable to attend a face-to-face school or are pursuing a course of study that is unavailable at their local school. The flexibility that Dubbo provides allows students to receive a quality education that is tailored to their personal needs and lifestyles. Most notably, Dubbo has worked to improve access to mental health resources for its students and their families, helping them gain necessary support outside of the learning environment.

Harnessing Leadership Potential to Keep Teens in School

Fontana Unified School District, Fontana, Calif.

Fontana Unified School District, located in Fontana, California, has been awarded a grand prize grant in whole child partner National School Board Association’s 2013 Magna Awards. The district has developed and implemented the Fontana Leadership Intervention Program (FLIP). FLIP, which is directed at middle and high school students, offers students a variety of classes ranging from ethics to drug and alcohol resistance. The program also requires participation in community projects and seminars for parents as well. This multifaceted outreach has already made a visible difference in behavior issues at both the middle and high school levels.

School Staff Works Tirelessly to Improve their Students

Milwaukie High School, Milwaukie, OR.

Milwaukie High School's staff works tirelessly to improve their students’ academic, social, and emotional growth; to expand their educational practices; and sharpen the administration’s focus on staff professional development. Incoming students’ reading and math proficiency are assessed by trained staff and additional supplementary reading and math courses are provided as needed. Teams of staff meet once a week with a group of school counselors, mental and physical health providers, social workers, and administrators to discuss ways to support at-risk students. During these meetings, participants collaborate to build individual intervention plans for these students, which can include academic support, mental or physical health care, or other social services.  The strong sense of service Milwaukie High School teachers demonstrate is mirrored in their students’ participation in the community. Students better understand the relevancy of their learning through service learning opportunities, career-technical programs, and the performing arts. The school has seen improvements in reading and math achievement in participating students, and its graduation rate has steadily improved beyond Oregon state’s average. Milwaukie High School received the 2013 Vision in Action: The Whole Child Award for its tireless efforts to improve.

Nurturing Confidence, Compassion, and Personal Excellence in Students

Corpus Christi College, Bateman, Western Australia

Corpus Christi College is a co-educational high school of nearly 1,200 students located just south of Perth. The school provides a modern, exciting, and forward-thinking education experience for students, nurturing confidence, compassion, and personal excellence. The school is committed to educating young people to serve as school and community leaders and students are prepared to become life-long learners and global citizens.

Recognized as a MindMatters School in 2011 by whole child partner Principals Australia Institute, Corpus Christi College has established a functional school-based core health and well-being team with clear processes and roles to support their work. The school has increased the number of trained staff and the range of professional development opportunities available to support staff wellness. Students are encouraged to take proactive leadership roles in mental health and well-being initiatives and mental health and resilience themes are integrated throughout the curriculum and extracurricular activities. Parent, family, and community involvement has expanded with regular parent information forums and direct links with community mental health services.

High School Shows Strength in Unity

Balga Senior High School, Balga, Western Australia

Balga Senior High School is located in a northern suburb of Perth, a metropolitan area that is culturally diverse. The school has strong pastoral care programs that address the social and emotional needs of students. The school motto, "Strength in Unity," implies that cooperation is the key to providing a happy and pleasant environment in which all can strive for excellence in their educational pursuits.

Recognized as a MindMatters School in 2011 by whole child partner Principals Australia Institute, staff at Balga Senior High School are a vibrant and active team committed to ensuring that all students feel safe in a supportive environment and that the students' social, emotional, and physical needs are met. The school is a leader in connecting with the local community and has built relationships with many community organizations, including The Smith Family, North Migrant Resource Centre, and the Youth on Health Festival, Western Australia's largest youth performing and visual arts festival. Students participate in the festival annually. Student spirit groups provide practical opportunities for student voice in school thinking and activities and promote tolerance of differences through extra-curricular activities.

Mentor Teachers Build Relationships and Personalize Learning

Castlemaine Secondary College, Castlemaine, Victoria, Australia

Recognized as a MindMatters School in 2011 by whole child partner Principals Australia Institute, Castlemaine Secondary College serves 760 students and is located 120 kilometers northwest of Melbourne. The school recently dedicated itself to improving relationships between all members of the school community, improving the personalization of student learning, and developing the school's community partnerships. This has in turn resulted in the school developing the capacity of all teaching staff to be teachers of well-being. The introduction of a new pastoral care structure, including small small mentor groups, has also aided in improving relationships and the personalization of student learning. In addition all teaching staff have become mentors, and they have a key role in serving as the first point of contact for parents and other teachers whenever there are any concerns about students in their groups.

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