The primary goal of this project is to refine and disseminate a valid, reliable quantitative assessment tool to measure the implementation of school wellness policies use to meet the Healthy and Hunger-Free Kids Act mandate to evaluate and report on wellness policy implementation. The research team previously developed the WellSAT tool to assess written school wellness policies and based on this tool developed the WellSAT-I (Implementation). The WellSAT-I is a prototype policy implementation measure, comprised of structured, coded interviews with principals, teachers, and food service personnel. Data have been collected using this measure in 12 schools over three years in an urban, lower-income school district, which will serve as the starting point for establishing reliability and validity of the tool. First, the research team will convene a national group of researchers and practitioners who are experts in the assessment and implementation of school wellness policies. The WellSAT-I will be refined based on psychometric analyses of reliability and validity and findings from the convening and other stakeholder perspectives. Next, the tool will be piloted in 50 school districts across the country. When finalized, the revised tool will be disseminated to researchers, state government agencies, advocacy groups, school administrators, parent groups, and other wellness policy stakeholders.
Refining and Disseminating a Valid, Reliable Quantitative Assessment Tool, WellSAT‑I, to Measure Implementation of School Wellness Policies
Strong nutrition standards for school meals, consistent with evidence-based recommendations, position children for optimal health and wellbeing. Strong science supports the link between lowering sodium intake and better health. This new issue brief from Healthy Eating Research examines the recent history of sodium standards for school meals. It highlights current sodium intake … More
In the next year, an estimated 1 in 4 children will experience food insecurity (up from 1 in 6, pre-pandemic), disproportionately impacting children in low-income households and racial/ethnic minorities. To mediate loss of school meals during closures and reduce COVID-19 exposure, Congress authorized the USDA to permit local education authorities … More
Stories of Success: A Qualitative Examination of Contributors to Excellence in School Drinking Water Access
Drinking water instead of beverages with added sugar can help prevent obesity and cavities and promote overall health. Children spend much of their day in school, where they have variable access to drinking water. In 2010, federal and state law required California public schools to provide free potable water to … More