The Center’s location within the American Public Health Association underscores the fact that high school completion is a public health priority. Educational success starts with healthy students, and students who complete high school are more likely to have a lifetime of better health and economic opportunities.
The Center was established within APHA in 2010, seeded by a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to build on the success of the School-Based Health Care Policy Program. Launched by the Foundation in 2004, the six-year initiative accomplished extensive local, state and federal policy changes to stabilize and expand school-based health care. Federal policy successes included the adoption of school-based health care as a safety net provider in the 2009 Children’s Health Insurance Reauthorization Program, formerly SCHIP, and authorization for a federal school-based health care grant program in the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the historic health reform legislation.
Now, the Center works to ensure continued funding for school-based health care, and to expand the role of school-based health care to improve educational outcomes for all students.
“K-12 is the opportune time to establish good health behaviors,” says APHA Executive Director Georges C. Benjamin, MD, FACP, FACEP (E). “By focusing on this population, we hope to provide our nation’s children with a healthy start in life, and positively impact the health of future generations.”
Governing policy for this focus includes APHA Policy Number 20101, Public Health and Education: Working Collaboratively Across Sectors to Improve High School Graduation as a Means to Eliminate Health Disparities. For more information on the American Public Health Association visit www.apha.org.