The Health, Well-Being and Educational Success of School-Age Youth and School-based Health Care
Nearly one-third of all students in the United States do not graduate from high school on time. For Black, Latino and American Indian students, that number jumps to half.It’s a destructive cycle: students who don’t graduate face lifelong health risks and high medical costs, and are more likely to engage in risky health behaviors.1 They are less likely to be employed and insured, and earn less—all of which continues the cycle of poverty and disparities.2
For all students, and particularly vulnerable ones, we need to pay attention to whether they ate last night, whether they have electricity at home to do their homework, whether they even have a home. School-based health center staff are in the best position to see the social factors and stressors that affect students, and to work with the school and community to remove those barriers so students can learn and graduate.
- Mead KH. Improving adolescent girls’ riskly sexual behaviours: Can access to school-based health care help? [doctoral dissertation]. Washington, DC: The George Washington University; 2005. http://gradworks.umi.com/31/83/3183159.html. Accessed August 11, 2011.
- Alliance for Excellent Education. Healthier and Wealthier: Decreasing Health Care Costs by Increasing Educational Attainment. http://www.all4ed.org/publication_material/healthier_wealthier. Published November 1, 2006.