This paper discusses how accountability pressures for schools to improve test score outcomes implemented under No Child Left Behind (NCLB) may affect children’s obesity. Using a unique dataset of Arkansas schools that merged school-level information on test scores, obesity, and other demographic information, researchers found that NCLB accountability rules may have unintended negative consequences for children’s weight. Schools on the margin of passing the Adequate Yearly Progress threshold under NCLB had approximately a 0.5 percentage point higher rate of overweight the following year. Follow-up survey data from school principals indicated that reductions in physical activity and worsening of the food environment may have been potential changes schools made in response to NCLB.
Adequate (or Adipose?) Yearly Progress: Assessing the Effect of No Child Left Behind on Children’s Obesity. Working Paper 16873
This paper discusses the impact of early elementary school attendance on children’s body weight. Using data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study–Kindergarten Cohort of 1998 (ECLS-K), researchers compared the weights of children who had completed first grade to those of the same age who had completed kindergarten only. Employing a … More
Stricter school accountability standards have changed the inner workings of elementary schools in the United States, raising test scores in the process. These changes have been particularly abrupt in schools labeled as failing under their states accountability regime. This study will assess whether children in schools just below the test … More
Food Environment Near Schools and Body weight-A Systematic Review of Associations by race/ethnicity, Gender, Grade, and Socio-Economic Factors
Previous research reported modest associations between food environments near schools and adiposity among children overall. The associations within sociodemographic subgroups have not been synthesized. This review assessed the evidence on the associations between food environments near schools and childhood obesity within different demographic and socio-economic subgroups. PubMed and Scopus databases … More