Doing Better: How School Leadership is Making Student Health and Well-Being a Priority

April 23, 2015 4:39 PM

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The role that schools must play in the lives of students is complex and ever-expanding. To ensure that students are ready and able to achieve academically, schools must be poised to meet the myriad health, emotional and social needs that can negatively impact students' academic achievement if they go unmet. Too many of our children are overweight and undernourished; uninsured or underinsured; or miss too many school days because of asthma. Far too many of them are victims of adverse childhood experiences, and if they are black and brown, they are disproportionately suspended from school, missing valuable learning time.

I am elated that we, as a country, are beginning to examine policies that encourage healthy and safe environments, as we did with smoking and seat belts. But I still hear a lot of this: All children should do well in school, and they do better when they are eating healthy and exercising; those who d...

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