Federal law requires water access in schools where meals are served. Schools report high rates of water accessibility in cafeterias, but observations indicate lower adherence. Although observation is costly, it permits a more detailed assessment of a water source to determine whether it provides effective access that encourages water consumption and thus, healthy hydration for students. To offer a less costly alternative to observations, researchers developed and validated a photo‐evidence tool to examine characteristics of effective school drinking water access. Two observers recorded characteristics of 200 water sources in 30 schools, including type, wear, cleanliness, and water flow, and examined obstructions and beverage promotion near sources, as well as, drinking vessel availability. Observers photographed sources which were coded by a separate research team. Agreement between observation audits and photograph coding was assessed through percent agreement, and kappa statistics and correlation coefficients.
Published: January 2020
ID #: 73392
Journal: Journal of School Health
Authors: Patel AI, Podrabsky M, Hecht AA, Morris S, Yovanovich S, Walkinshaw LP, Ritchie L, Hecht C
Training High School Student “Citizen Scientists” to Document School Water Access: A Feasibility StudyYouth water consumption is inadequate. Increasing adolescent water consumption could support decreased dental caries and body mass index (BMI). Most schools are required to provide free, potable water. However, there is evidence that schools’ self-reported compliance data overestimate access to water in schools. We tested the feasibility of using student citizen scientists to collect high More