Journal Article

Evaluations of health promoting schools: a review of nine studies

Wanjirũ Mũkoma and Alan J. Flisher

in Health Promotion International

Volume 19, issue 3, pages 357-368
Published in print September 2004 | ISSN: 0957-4824
Published online September 2004 | e-ISSN: 1460-2245 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/heapro/dah309
Evaluations of health promoting schools: a review of nine studies

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The concept of ‘health promoting schools’ has been embraced internationally as an effective way of promoting the health of children, adolescents, and the wider school community. It is only recently that attempts have been made to evaluate health promoting schools. This paper reviews evaluations of health promoting schools and draws useful evaluation methodology lessons. The review is confined to school-based interventions that are founded explicitly on the concept of the health promoting school and employ the concept beyond one school domain. We included nine evaluations in this review. Seven of these were published in the peer reviewed scientific literature. Two were unpublished reports. One study was a randomized controlled trial, while a quasi-experimental research design with comparison schools was used in three studies. With three exceptions, combinations of quantitative and qualitative data were collected. There was evidence that the health promoting school has some influence on various domains of health for the school community. It is also possible to integrate health promotion into the school curriculum and policies successfully. However, the evaluation of health promoting schools is complex. We discuss some of the methodological challenges of evaluating health promoting schools and make suggestions for improving future evaluations.

Keywords: evaluation design; health promoting school; review

Journal Article.  6128 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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