Journal Article

Australian Teachers' Understandings of the Health Promoting School Concept and the Implications for the Development of School Health

Lawrence St. Leger

in Health Promotion International

Volume 13, issue 3, pages 223-235
Published in print January 1998 | ISSN: 0957-4824
Published online January 1998 | e-ISSN: 1460-2245 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/heapro/13.3.223
Australian Teachers' Understandings of the Health Promoting School Concept and the Implications for the Development of School Health

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The health promoting school has emerged as a comprehensive framework to enhance the health status and health potential of school students. It requires teachers to be proactive in a number of areas beyond the formal curriculum. The success of health promoting schools will depend largely on what teachers know about its building blocks and the likelihood that they will be adopted. A number of teachers were interviewed and surveyed in a sequential study to ascertain their understanding of what constitutes a health promoting school. The findings indicate that teachers think mainly about school health in terms of the curriculum; have little understanding of how community partnerships might work; are very supportive of the concept; and have limited preservice and inservice training in health issues. It is argued that the growth of health promoting schools will be dependent on comprehensive professional development programmes; the production of resources which link teachers' perceived core business—teaching the mandated curriculum —to the building blocks of the health promoting school; closer collaboration between the health and education sectors; and a recognition by the community that schools cannot easily address (and solve) society's health concerns.

Keywords: health promoting school; school health; teachers understandings

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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