The evidence is clear. Healthy students perform better in school.
Consider these findings from national studies:
- Students who are physically active have better grades, school attendance, cognitive performance, and classroom behaviors.
- Participation in physical activities is associated with higher grade point averages, lower drop-out rates, and fewer disciplinary problems among students.
- Students who eat a healthy breakfast have increased academic grades and standardized test scores, reduced absenteeism, and improved cognitive performance.
Helping students stay healthy can help school districts achieve better overall test scores, grades, and attendance rates. However, when schools develop policies to improve student performance, they generally look past the health and wellness component of academic achievement. Advocates must stress the importance of student health to stakeholders, and inform them of the link between healthy students and improved academic performance.
Health Action League works every day to improve the health of underserved NYC youth.
Our goal is to improve the academic achievements of our students by fostering their physical and mental wellbeing. Advocates can adopt Health Action League‘s model to improve the health of local students, including:
- Providing fun physical activities for students at their school, community centers, and afterschool programs, such as yoga, boxing, and zumba classes.
- Holding healthy cooking classes for students, and distributing healthy recipes to their families and friends.
- Hosting health fairs and town halls with wellness activities and resources for healthy living.
- Educating policymakers and school administrators about the link between student health and academic performance.
Through action and leadership, advocates can empower students to live healthy and flourish in their studies. Let’s work together to improve the wellbeing of our students!