Engaging with the process of becoming a health promoting school gives schools the opportunity to review existing practice and can identify areas for further development. From this basis, the school will then be able to set and implement relevant and achievable health promoting targets.
Aside from the obvious benefits of having happier, healthier, better motivated pupils and staff, working towards becoming a health promoting school will add value in a number of ways, for example:
Benefits to the pupils
Through consultation and participation, pupils should be
- more confident, more motivated and more able to improve their skills at making important life and health choices
- more likely to achieve good academic results within a setting that supports their health and well-being
- more able to gain access to a range of support services and have their personal and social development valued
- more able to access accurate and up to date health information.
Benefits for the school and staff
- Increasing opportunities for the whole school community to be involved, strengthening links within the school family: parents/carers, staff, pupils and community partners
- Greater support and professional development for staff
- Greater recognition and value given to staff health and well-being
- Developing stronger external partnerships, including sharing good practice with other schools
- Gaining a more planned and coherent relationship with and support from external agencies
- Shaping their own programme through local target setting, action planning and adapting to their own school’s changing needs
- Identifying opportunities to promote the school positively
Benefits for the community
- Closer ties and greater understanding between school health services and other agencies
- The chance to influence and contribute to what goes on in schools
- The chance to work alongside schools in reducing social exclusion, disadvantage and disaffection
- Encouraging the school and the local community to collaborate in health initiatives which benefit pupils, their families and community members
- Giving pupils opportunities to become involved and take more responsibility for personal and community health.
(Healthy Schools, 04)