Comprehensive School Health


Healthy children are better able to learn. The opposite is true as well – students who get a good education tend to be healthier for life. Given the inextricable link between health and education, schools provide an ideal setting for children to learn healthy habits that can benefit them for the rest of their lives.

Based on the recognition that health and learning are interdependent, BC’s healthy schools strategy promotes policies and programs that reflect a comprehensive school health approach to support student’s physical, social and emotional well being. Comprehensive school health is an internationally recognized framework for supporting improvements in students’ educational outcomes while addressing school health in a planned, integrated and holistic way.

Comprehensive school health means addressing health in every aspect of the school environment, including:

  • teaching and learning
  • the school’s social and physical environment
  • healthy school policy, and
  • services and community partnerships.

Research has shown that taking this approach is the most effective way to support improvements in children’s health – and in their academic achievement. 

For more information on comprehensive school health, visit the Healthy Schools BC website.

See also Supportive Environments for Learning: Healthy Eating and Physical Activity Within Comprehensive School Health, a special supplement to the Canadian Journal of Public Health.

Got Health? Celebration of Learning

Have a look at Central Okanagan School District (SD 23) student reflections on how they feel about being involved in healthy schools projects. The video was showcased at the discrict's Got Health? Celebration of Learning event.