The role of family and community involvement in the development and implementation of school nutrition and physical activity policy

Rebecca Kehm, Cynthia S. Davey, Marilyn S. Nanney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Although there are several evidence-based recommendations directed at improving nutrition and physical activity standards in schools, these guidelines have not been uniformly adopted throughout the United States. Consequently, research is needed to identify facilitators promoting schools to implement these recommendations. Therefore, this study analyzed the 2008 School Health Profiles Principal Survey (Profiles) to explore the role of family and community involvement in school nutrition and physical activity standards. METHODS: Survey data on nutrition and physical activity policies, as well as family and community involvement, were available for 28 states, representing 6732 secondary schools. One-factor analysis of variance (ANOVA), 2-sample t-tests, Pearson's chi-square tests, and multiple logistic and linear regression models were employed in this analysis. RESULTS: Family and community involvement were associated with schools more frequently utilizing healthy eating strategies and offering students healthier food options. Further, involvement was associated with greater support for physical education staff and more intramural sports opportunities for students. CONCLUSIONS: Though family and community involvement have the potential to have a positive influence on school nutrition and physical activity policies and practices, involvement remains low in schools. Increased efforts are needed to encourage collaboration among schools, families, and communities to ensure the highest health standards for all students.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)90-99
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of School Health
Volume85
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2015

Keywords

  • Adolescent obesity
  • Family and community involvement
  • School nutrition policy
  • School physical activity policy

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