The first global standards for incorporating health and well-being into the education system have been set amid rising mental health problems during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Researchers at the Murdoch Institute for Children’s Research (MCRI) Center for Adolescent Health led the two-year project at the invitation of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations for Education, Science and Culture (UNESCO). The two reports, which will be launched this week in Geneva, provide a frame of reference to support the implementation of “Health promotion of schools, which aim to promote health and learning equally in all aspects of school life.
MCRI professor Susan Sawyer said the deep links between children’s health, well-being and learning have been demonstrated through the impact of COVID-19 on school closures.
“In addition to the disruptive effects on student engagement, learning outcomes, and educational transitions, there is growing global evidence of the impact of school blockages on children and adolescents. emotional distress and mental health, ”he said.
“There are concerns about students with undergraduate studies mental health disorders have a higher risk of permanently disconnecting from education. While it negatively affects their future career prospects, early school leaving becomes a risk factor for ill health in adulthood.
“The value of schools and places for academics has never been appreciated social learning, but also as scenarios that can improve student health and well-being. “
Dra. Monika Raniti, of MCRI, said that “schools that promote health” were about strengthening the capacity of the education system to be a health environment for learning and working.
“This school-wide approach has been shown to benefit various aspects of learning, health and well-being,” he said. However, there are huge gaps between the ideal of promoting health in schools and current practices. Too often, schools do not have the right resources or have to rely on the efforts of a small number of motivated staff who are already in a position. ”
Researchers have developed eight standards to promote school health to guide government and school leadership efforts, covering policy improvement and increased stakeholder engagement, investment, resources and participation. .
Dr Ruth Aston of the University of Melbourne said the guidelines recognized the value of a quality leadership and teaching practice that extended the vision to schools beyond their traditional approach to reading, writing and reading. ‘arithmetic.
Professor Sawyer said the health and education sectors should work closely together to implement these guidelines.
“This is undoubtedly the biggest challenge facing schools that promote health, as the health and education sectors have historically been built from different DNA. An investment in a new one is urgently needed. workforce that can be straddling both sectors, ”he said.
The standards cover school and government policies and resources, school governance, leadership and community partnerships, a curriculum that supports health and wellness such as nutrition and safety, a social-emotional environment that it promotes equity and diversity and provides school-related health services.
To review the guidance documents visit www.who.int
Murdoch Children’s Research Institute
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