SHAPE America is the nation’s largest professional organization for school-based health and physical educators and is uniquely positioned to collaborate with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), national health and education organizations, state departments of education and school districts to affect systems-level change that supports the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of students and staff by serving as the national NGO expert for Priority 4: School Administrator Support and Action for Healthy Schools. SHAPE America will emphasize the connections between health and education for both physical and emotional health, as well to combat existing health and educational inequities. This project will improve the health and well-being of children, adolescents, and school staff by engaging school administrators as champions to advance equity and school health through promotion of the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) model, building the skills and capacity of district wellness committees, and sharing successes for innovative and equitable policies, programs, and practices. This project will support CDC-funded state education agencies (SEAs), school administrators, constituents, and schools in the implementation of equitable and inclusive policies and practices that support WSCC , advance health equity, reduce disparities, and provide a national system of peer-learning and resource sharing through its extensive network throughout the country. The target populations for this project are SEAs and schools with a particular focus on school administrators.
SHAPE America’s background of strong collaborative partnerships and its expansive national network, SEA leaders, and state affiliates will enable this project to affect systems-level change through implementation guidance, expert technical assistance, and innovative, high-quality professional learning through the strategies outlined below.
Strategy 1: Professional development (PD) and technical assistance (TA) will be provided through two major initiatives: an administrator Training of Trainers (ToT), as well as district wellness committee professional learning plans. Both initiatives will build the knowledge and skills to understand, implement, and champion equitable and inclusive school health polices, programs, and practices that support WSCC): 1) Administrators will engage in a ToT and Community of Practice (CoP) to build their depth of knowledge and skills to lead districts and schools that activate the WSCC approach through equitable and inclusive school health policies, programs, and practices, and 2) Professional learning plans are collaborative learning experiences where district wellness committees will build their capacity to develop teams that reflect and represent the diversity of their students, families, and communities; connect school health policies, practices and programs to equity, diversity and inclusion initiatives; and understand and interpret both academic and health data, including CDC surveillance, to support equity and inclusion for all children.
Strategy 2: Development and dissemination of evidence-based resources will provide guidance on the development, implementation, and evaluation of equitable and inclusive school health policies, programs, and practices that support the whole child.
Strategy 3: Partnerships have always been in invaluable aspect of the work that SHAPE America engages in and this project will seek to both expand existing partnerships and create new, collaborative partnerships that support SEAs, schools, and constituents.
Strategy 4: Networking, TA, and peer sharing will also be supported an online, interactive platform that will foster engagement in solution-oriented discussion, facilitate peer learning and resource sharing, and guide learning and resource development.
Through this work, resources that promote health equity will build SEA and district capacity to implement WSCC policies.