The childhood obesity epidemic is one of the
greatest public health, social, and economic challenges of the 21st century. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
(CDC), the National Association of State Boards of Education (NASBE), and the
Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) have come
together to support the coordination of health and education to address
childhood obesity. These organizations recognize each sector cannot
reverse the epidemic on their own, but coordinated efforts implemented through
school-based initiatives are most likely to be effective. Promoting nutrition
and physical activity is consistent with the fundamental mission of schools,
which is to educate youth to become healthy, productive citizens who make
meaningful contributions to society.
According to NASBE’s “The Role of Schools in
Preventing Childhood Obesity” report, schools play an especially important role because:
95 percent of young people are enrolled in schools.
of physical activity and healthy eating have long been a fundamental component
of the American educational experience, so schools are not being asked to
assume new responsibilities.
has shown that well-designed, well-implemented school programs can effectively
promote physical activity, healthy eating, and reductions in television viewing
research documents the connections between physical activity, good nutrition,
physical education and nutrition programs, and academic performance.
Explore the drop-down menu below to learn more about
recommended strategies for schools.
Designate a Health Champion
Assess School’s Health and Wellness Policies
Increase Opportunities for Physical Activity
Implement Quality School Meals Program
Participate in Professional Development