In order to select what types of programs are to be made constituents of a new K-12 health education curriculum, it is necessary to take into the account that all its apprentices must be provided with an opportunity to be healthy, fit, and willing to embrace new knowledge. Therefore, K-12 must address school student’s overall development, including physical, psychological, and social aspects. As a school nurse, I would recommend to include the following types of programs:
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- Coordinated Approach to Child Health (CATCH) is a program that manages to unite forces of numerous significant players in students’ lives. The program is proven to be effective in preventing childhood obesity as its implementation has already led to an 11-percent decrease in the number of overweight cases across the country (Lobstein et al., 2015).
- Healthy School Canteen Strategy is another effective program educating children about healthy nutrition and helping them make the right choice regarding food offered in their school dining rooms. It encourages participation of both public and non-government schools. The program also addresses products provided in vending machines (Hills, Nathan, Robinson, Fox, & Wolfenden, 2015).
- The HLC pre-K program is a behavioral curriculum aimed to teach children healthy behaviors in all aspects of their daily activities. The majority of lessons it offers are given in authentic literature pieces intended for kids as well as interactive group games for them to have full-fledged social, cognitive, emotional, and physical experiences (Lobstein et al., 2015).
To my mind, three major points have to be considered as a part of the components of a K-12 physical educational curriculum:
- life skills (children are to be taught how to push all abilities to their limits in extreme situations);
- fitness (the importance of physical exercising for a good body image must be stressed);
- wellness and safety (children must learn how to use their physical strength to promote health and safety).
As far as the obesity problem is concerned, K-12 will particularly emphasize the needs of children from disadvantaged communities. They will be welcome to attend health camps free of charge. In general, all children will have lessons devoted to strategies of avoiding fast food and creating a positive body image.
However, such a considerable cut in school nurse staffing may create a number of challenges. First, it will be difficult to address immediate health concerns of children. Second, the K-12 promotion may be slowed down by understaffing. Third, nurses will be unable to control after-school and summer-camp programs.