This paper examines free drinking water access in California public schools. Researchers conducted cross-sectional interviews with administrators from 240 California schools from May to November 2011 to examine the proportion of schools that met excellent water access criteria (i.e., location, density, type, maintenance, and appeal of water sources), school level characteristics associated with excellent water access, and barriers to improving drinking water access. They found that no schools met all the criteria for excellent drinking water access. When compared with elementary schools, middle and high schools were less likely to have at least one fountain for every 25 students. Compared with city schools, rural schools were more likely to offer a non-fountain source of free drinking water. The availability of safe and appealing drinking water was not associated with school-level characteristics, yet newer schools were more likely to better maintain water sources than older schools. When school administrators were asked about barriers to improving drinking water access, they cited other pressing concerns (e.g., academic demands) and the cost of improving drink water infrastructure.
Tapping Into Water: Key Considerations for Achieving Excellence in School Drinking Water Access
Observations of Drinking Water Access in School Food Service Areas Before Implementation of Federal and State School Water Policy, California, 2011
This article discusses the results of a study that examined the provision of water and student water consumption in food service areas (FSA) in a random sample of San Francisco, California Bay Area schools. Barriers to and strategies for implementing federal and state drinking water requirements were also examined. Researchers … More
Examining the Effects of School Drinking-Water Policies and Practices on Student Consumption of Sugar-Sweetened Beverages in California
Few U.S. studies have investigated school drinking water access and policies and practices related to school drinking water. This project will investigate drinking water availability, policies and practices, and barriers to implementing programs and policies to improve drinking water access and intake in California public schools. If pending California state … More
More than 21.8 million school-age children receive free or reduced-price school lunch and 12.6 million children receive free or reduced-price breakfast each day. Since updated nutrition standards for school meals, snack foods, and beverages have been implemented following passage of the 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, a growing body of … More