Meaningful student involvement in Coordinated School Health

Talk about the meeting of jargon… the Coordinated School Health model, or CSH, was created by Drs. Diane Allensworth and Lloyd Kolbe of the Centers for Disease Control in 1987. Their model focuses on the systematic entwinement of eight components in order to promote more effective school health, and increase its impact on student success. Those components are:

  • Health education, including all curricular and promotion messages distributed in schools addressing health topics, particualarly focused on prevention;
  • Health services, including any nursing or first aid, as well as many intervention efforts;
  • Nutrition, including all school-delivered and competitive foods;
  • Mental health, including counseling, phsycologists, and social services;
  • Environmental health, focusing on the phsycial plant and the social makeup;
  • Physical education, including classroom and other activities that infuse physical activity with curriculum-driven learning;
  • Staff wellness, particularly in regard to the employee-type concerns addressing adults working in schools, and;
  • Community and family involvement.

Since the model was rolled out there have been dozens of incarnations of federal programs designed to foster this deliberative organizational development model in local K-12 schools, districts, and state agencies across the U.S. Almost every state has received money from the federal government to lead activities, to varying effects.

My interest in this model stems from my work in New York state between 2006-08 when I worked with the statewide Student Support Services Center there to integrate meaningful student involvement throughout the implementation of this model in dozens of schools across the state. It was an exilerating time, and the lessons I learned then are only beginning to sink in. Stay tuned as I continue to explore this infusion throughout my work, particularly with regard to its efficacy in academic achievement and other learning outcomes.

Written by Adam Fletcher, this article was originally posted to Learn more at!

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